Racine County grandmother accused of locking granddaughter in dog cage

Posted at 10:29 AM, Sep 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-08 13:11:36-04

A grandmother is accused of locking her grandchild in a dog kennel. A child abuse investigation is now underway in Racine County. 

"It was one of the most disturbing things I have witnessed in law enforcement," said Sheriff Chris Schmaling, Racine County.

"Cardboard on the floor, a couple of blankets and a padlock. I wouldn't treat my own dog that way," said Schmaling.

Investigators were in and out of the rural home in the Town of Norway Thursday.  The Sheriff said the child was allegedly locked up 12 hours a day for at least a week. 

"Was put in there in the evening and then let out in the morning to get ready for school. And then during the course of the weekends would be housed back into that dog kennel while the caregivers had other things to do."

The Sheriff said the grandma has custody of the 9-year-old and a 10-year-old sibling who are now in protective custody. A man, not a relative, owns the home. 

"What goes through your mind?  What would that child have to do to get you to go out and purchase a dog kennel?"

The grandma and the home owner are in custody for causing mental harm to a child, false imprisonment and other felony charges.  

"The caregivers are in custody.  They're locked in a jail cell where they ought to be," said Schmaling.

Neighbors said the homeowner is a decent man and was surprised to hear anything about possible child abuse. The Sheriff said the man is not cooperating with authorities, but the grandmother is.