Children found living with 23 cats placed in 'safe' environment
The eight children who were living in a Santa Ana home where 23 cats, a small brown dog and an African parrot were found crammed in a single bedroom Tuesday have been placed with family members while child protective services continues to investigate.
In all, 10 people were living in the two-bedroom home, including the eight children, who are between the ages of 2 and 17, said Cpl. Anthony Bertagna with the Santa Ana Police Department.
“We had to find a place to put the kids in a safe environment,” Bertagna said.
Animal control responded to the home in the 1500 block of West Sixth Street after a complaint of a foul odor. A Hazmat team was summoned to assist because the smell of ammonia was so strong.
Authorities found a bedroom caked with feces and urine and skinny, malnourished animals.
The house was red-tagged Tuesday night and cleaning crews are expected at the home Wednesday afternoon. Code enforcement will then evaluate whether the home is inhabitable.
The animals are currently being housed at the Orange County Animal Shelter.
Animal Control has completed its investigation and has submitted a report to the Orange County district attorney for possible prosecution. Child protective services is continuing its investigation.
--Nicole Santa Cruz