RICHMOND, Texas (FOX 26) - Following a Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office investigation, 54-year-old Paula Sinclair and 78-year-old Allen Richardson face charges of aggravated kidnapping, a first degree felony, and Injury to a child/bodily injury, a third-degree felony.
Detectives arrived to a home in the Long Meadow Farms subdivision on Nov. 23 and found seven children ranging in ages from 13 to 16, were reported to be malnourished, locked in a room and struck with a wooden paddle.
The seven children, all with special needs, were adopted by Sinclair and her husband, although her husband does not live in that home. Richardson did live in the home where he was referred to as 'Coach.' The children were transferred to the Fort Bend County Children's Advocacy Center in Rosenberg where they were interviewed. They are currently in the hospital. The children are in state custody and will be placed in foster homes.
Child Protective Services confirmed Sinclair adopted another child in October 2004 that died in her care. The child died January 2011 at the age of 7. That child was the last child she adopted.
Detectives learned that all seven children would stay in one room at the home. When Sinclair needed to take Richardson to doctor visits, the children would be kept in a closet roughly five feet by eight feet in size. The closet already had clothes and boxes inside, so the space was even smaller and the adults would be away from the home for extended periods of time, causing the children to urinate on themselves.
One of the children, who is diagnosed with Down Syndrome, was wearing a soiled diaper when he was removed from the home.
CAC personnel learned that all the children have learning disabilities and none of them attended school.
Sinclair also operated a group home for adults. Three men lived downstairs in the home. Two of the men were home when the children were removed and a third man had left the home.
The children who were removed from the home are being cared for by the CAC.
"I cannot think of a more deplorable situation than what we have learned in this case," said Sheriff Troy E. Nehls. "These people are taking advantage of a lousy situation at the expense of children who cannot fend for themselves. It is absolutely heart-breaking."
Sinclair and Richardson remain in Fort Bend County Jail custody.
UPDATE: A judge has ordered temporary custody of the 7 kids to CPS.