SALINAS—Authorities with the Monterey County Sheriff’s Department have arrested two Salinas residents after an investigations revealed that they where neglecting children in their care. Arrested were 31-year-old Eraca Dawn Craig and 44-year-old Christian Jessica Deanda, both of Salinas.
On Friday, March 14, Monterey County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 59 Russell Road in Salinas on a report of allegations of possible neglect of children. Upon arriving at the residence, Deputies found that the house was cluttered and very dirty. Deputies also found that there was very little food in the house. Deputies discovered that the two domestic partners had three small children living in those conditions.
The children’s age range were from 3-years-old to 8-years-old, and in fact, one of the women charged with neglect was the 3-year-old boy’s biological mother. The 8-year-old girl and 5-year-old boy were adopted.
The juvenile girl was taken to the hospital but all three showed signed of physical and emotional abuse. The children were starved, and authorities found that one of them had been chained to the floor to keep her from obtaining food.
“This was a particularly heinous case of child neglect” Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller said in a press conference. “This case actually impacted our workers as well as the social workers that have been involved in this case.”
All three children were taken from the home and placed into Child Protective Services. Craig and Deanda were arrested and booked into the Monterey County Jail on charges of child abuse and numerous other related charges. Their bail has been escalated.
The two pleaded not guilty at their arraignment and are scheduled for a preliminary hearing on March 28.
The Herald: Women who were arrested in child abuse case were scheduled to be married
San Jose Mercury News: Children found starving, chained and abused in Monterey County home