The parents of three children found in a locked room containing urine and feces pleaded guilty to felony child neglect charges.
A tip led Spotsylvania County sheriff's detectives to their house where they found the three kids in a room locked behind a homemade gate. Investigators described the conditions as heinous.
The children lived 24 hours a day locked up by their parents in a room stained with urine and feces.
A 17-month-old boy and his two sisters -- a 3-year-old and 4-year-old -- were unable to help themselves.
"The room itself was partitioned off," said Capt. Jeff Pearce of the Spotsylvania County Sheriff's Department. "Where the door should be, there was a cage, and the cage had slots in it where the family -- the parents -- could slide food into the children.
The children's parents, 36-year-old Brandy Kangas and 28-year-old Scott Suggs pleaded guilty to three counts of felony child neglect.
They were arrested in December after an anonymous tip led investigators to the house on Fleming Street and reported the children were being neglected and abused.
"The children had no real social contact with anybody," said Capt. Pearce. "It was a desperate situation."
Investigators searched the home, found a key and rescued the children.
According to the prosecution, the couple claims they did it to keep the kids from wandering.
The children appeared to be fed and physically okay, but were living in deplorable conditions and filth.
They are now in foster care and are said to be thriving. The community has also come together to help the children.
"Several people have donated clothing, toys, items, care things for the children," said Pearce. "In fact, they wish to remain anonymous. They just wanted to help."
The couple no longer lives in the home. They were given a six-year suspended sentence, which means they will not serve any additional time in prison.
As part of the plea, they are not allowed unsupervised visits with the children and can't regain custody without the approval of the courts and social services.