Police: Texas couple locked 12-year-old girl in closet for a year, allowed out only for school

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Texas girl locked in closet placed in foster care

BROWNSVILLE, Texas — A southern Texas couple accused of locking the woman’s 12-year-old daughter in a closet for about a year except to attend school remained in custody Tuesday, while the girl was in foster care.

Alfredo Ines, 43, and Leticia Ines, 40, were being held at the Cameron County Jail on charges of unlawful restraint and injury to a child. Neither had an attorney.

The girl was locked in the closet except to attend school or use the bathroom. If she needed the restroom during the night, she had to use a bucket in the closet, police said.

Investigators said she appeared malnourished, and would do her homework by light coming from beneath the closet door. She slept on quilts on the cement floor.

Child Protective Services investigated after one of her three brothers alerted school officials. The girl was so malnourished that she appeared to be only 8 years old and though old enough to be in seventh grade, she was in fifth, police said. Her three brothers were taken to other family members.

“Everyone in the house knew what was going on, but you have children who, based on fear, hold this secret,” Brownsville Police Sgt. Jimmy Manrrique told The Brownsville Herald.

Information from: The Brownsville Herald, www.brownsvilleherald.com

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