August 6, 2020

Tennessee toddler found locked in small cage, surrounded by animals, including snakes and mice

A Tennessee toddler was found locked in a small cage with animals and bugs surrounding him, including a 10-foot boa constrictor large enough to have killed the child, police say.

Henry County (Tennessee) Sheriff’s deputies were responding to a tip about a possible animal cruelty case when the child was found.

The child, believed to have been approximately 18 months old, was not injured but was hungry, police said.

Three adults inside the home, including some of the child’s relatives, were charged with a number of crimes, including child abuse.

Police said the house included nothing for the child indicating he spent much or all of his time inside the 4-foot by 4-foot cage.

Thomas Jefferson Brown, 46, Heather Scarbough, 42, and Charles Brown, 82, were all arrested.

Police seized the animals at the trailer that included:

  • 8 snakes
  • 531 mice, hamsters and rats
  • 56 dogs
  • 10 rabbits
  • 86 chickens and roosters
  • 4 parakeets
  • 3 cats
  • 1 pheasant