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‘Skinny, Weak and Malnourished’ 8-Year-Old Texas Boy Sneaks Into Neighbor’s Home, Raids Fridge for Food After Mom Leaves Him Home Alone: Police

malnourished  year old texas boy steals food neighbors fridge
Source: Cameron County Sheriff’s Office; Unsplash

Jun. 29 2023, Published 1:29 p.m. ET

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An 8-year-old boy in Texas was reportedly weak, skinny and malnourished when he allegedly broke into his neighbor’s home and started stealing food from their refrigerator, according to authorities.

Deputies received a welfare report regarding a child and arrived at the home in San Benito, officials said.

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Once at the scene, officers talked with neighbors, who said the child was hungry and looking for food when he broke into their home, Valley Central reported.

The neighbors then took the boy back to his own home, which is when they noticed his mother was not there, officials said.

According to the arrest release, “As per the complainants, an unknown child went into their residence, opened the refrigerator and started eating their food. As the complainants made contact with the child, he was holding food in his hands and stated he was ‘hungry.’”

On June 20, Crystal Viera was arrested in San Benito and charged with child abandonment and endangerment, according to the Cameron County Sheriff’s Office.

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Child neglect
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Police talked with Viera, who reportedly confessed to leaving the child home alone.

The case was sent to Child Protective Services, who subsequently removed the child from the residence, authorities said.

Officials said, “In their initial observations, the child was described as skinny, seemed very weak and malnourished.”

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Police said the victim was malnourished and showed signs of physical neglect. They also obtained substantial evidence, which led to an arrest warrant being issued for Viera.

Viera was booked into the Carrizales-Rucker Detention Center and is being held on $20,000 bail, officials said.

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