INDIANAPOLIS– An Indianapolis couple is in jail facing criminal charges after police say they found a 1-month-old child living in deplorable conditions.

The investigation began at an apartment building on west Michigan street in January.

Police claim a 1-month-old boy was found living in an apartment covered in trash, with no running water or food and drugs scattered around.

A safety assessment found the apartment to be unsafe and the malnourished newborn was taken to Riley Hospital where doctors reported the victim also had multiple broken bones likely due to abuse.

This week child neglect charges were filed against the victim’s parents, 54-year-old James Clenna and 31-year-old Sabrina.

Booking photo of James Clenna
Booking photo of Sabrina Clenna

According to court records, the child’s parents have had multiple children removed from their care due to neglect and abuse.  The prosecutor claims several other children were previously removed due to Sabrina’s drug use.

“Members of our community must speak up for youth in the community because they don’t have a voice,” said IMPD officer Samone Burris.

If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected, call the Indiana Department of Child Services’ Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline today. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including weekends and holidays. You can report abuse and neglect anonymously.

The Indiana Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline is 1-800-800-5556.

“When we say, ‘see something, say something,’ it doesn’t just apply to shootings or homicides.  It applies to everything, especially child abuse,” said Burris.

After being arrested, the boy’s mother allegedly told police the child was born in a bathtub and had never been to the doctor because she feared he would be taken away due to her constant drug use.  In addition, the woman confessed she never received prenatal care and admitted to smoking marijuana and is also smoking cocaine.

The charges coincide with April being National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Awareness advocates encouraged any parent who needs assistance to reach out.

“Child abuse and neglect is preventable, we know that. We need to come around each family, each community, make resources more readily available and let them know it’s okay to ask for help,” said Jeff Wittman with Prevent Child Abuse Indiana.

According to the affidavit, James admitted to hurting his son on accident, but said he didn’t take the boy to the hospital because he didn’t want another child taken away.

During an interview this week, Sabrina stated she knew she would be in trouble for the neglect and told James to be careful with the child.

Both suspects are being held on a 30 thousand dollar bond.  Both are due in court for an initial hearing next week.