Two are charged with child neglect

Haywood Gainey Jr.. PHOTO COURTESY OF DCDC

Melissa Ridgely. PHOTO COURTESY OF DCDC

A Darlington County man and woman are each charged with three counts of neglect by legal custodian after authorities allegedly found children living in deplorable conditions. Melissa Ann Ridgely and Haywood Gainey Jr., no address listed, were booked into the county jail Feb. 19, jail records show. In addition to the neglect charges, Gainey also faces a charge of criminal sexual conduct with a minor under 11, 1st degree. The neglect charges involve children under 4 years old, according to arrest warrants quoted by local news media. The warrants, as quoted, allege Ridgely and Gainey put the children at “substantial risk of harm affecting the child’s health by allowing the child to live in inhumane conditions. “This includes a large infestation of cockroaches and maggots among molded food, an abundance of pet urine and feces among the living areas, and failure to maintain the children’s basic hygiene, to the extent that it endangers the wellbeing of the children.”

Author: Rachel Howell

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