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Family held captive for four years in squalled conditions

By Schmuffin     May 11, 2007 in Crime
A Chester, South Carolina man is in jail after holding his family captive for four years.
Human waste covering the bathroom floor, maggots infesting the refrigerator, waist high piles of filthy laundry and the permeating smell of dead animals all greeted police when they visited the home of Danny William Dove. According to police, every room was decrepit except for the small room Dove used to run an illegal gambling parlor.
His young sons, ages 8 and 4, slept on a bare mattress, did not attend school, were rarely allowed to leave the home and lived with video cameras monitoring their room and the doors to the house.
Both boys are barely able to communicate. The 8 yr old speaks in broken English and the 4 yr old has few recognizable words. According to the boys' grandmother, the only words they can speak clearly are curse words. All of this went on while Dove's wife lay in a drug induced stupor.
Dove kept his wife, Tamara 37, compliant and indoors by plying her with prescription painkillers, crack and cocaine. It may be weeks before she has recovered enough to be interviewed .
Dove is being charged with two counts of child neglect, two counts of distribution of a controlled substance, two counts of criminal conspiracy, and operating a gambling establishment. He is now facing up to 40 yrs in prison
Helaine Young, Dove's mother, is defending her son, claiming that his wife is the root of the couples drug addiction woes. She has been caring for the couples 12 year old son since he was an infant and has made numerous appeals to the Department of Family Services over the last six years on the behalf of her other grandchildren.
We have had reports in the past, and the nature of the reports are currently under review," agency spokeswoman Marilyn Matheus said. "It's too early to tell what exactly happened when.
Brittney Dove, 20 and the eldest of Danny William Dove's children, claims that she and a friend used to take care of the boys because their mother would not get out of bed.
She is quoted as saying
It disgusts me that he's in jail. I'm not condoning what he did. There's no excuse for the child neglect. But she should be there, too. He honestly loved her. He was nothing but good to her.
The boys are now safe, living with relatives and officials are hopeful that they will have a chance at a normal life.
More about Danny dove, Illegal gambling, Child neglect
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