(Riverton, Wyo.) – Two women have been charged with child abuse and neglect after school officials alerted police to a 5-year-old boy who was bruised and who had an open wound on his head that was not healing. Charged were Cheryl Willow, 55, of Riverton and Rosalie Willow, 29, of Ethete. Cheryl Willow was also arrested on two outstanding failure to appear warrants and Rosalie Willow was found to have four outstanding warrants, also for failure to appear. The abuse charges were lodged after officers found numerous methamphetamine paraphernalia, including uncovered hypodermic needles, a spoon with meth residue and a light bulb that had been fashioned into a meth pipe.
The little boy had bruising on his face, under his left eye and on his left cheek, bruising on the middle of his back and the laceration on his head.
According to a Riverton Police Department Report, officers were called to the Ashgrove School on Tuesday where social workers and school administrators had noticed the child’s condition. The report indicated the laceration on the boys head was not clean and had not been cleaned in some time, with crusty blood and dirt inside the wound.
Officers went to the boy’s residence in the 500 block of South 3rd West and discovered a house in disarray with clothes, trash, and dried food on the floor and furnishings, empty cupboards and a refrigerator that only contained old leftovers that had dried out and that were inedible. Police also learned that 17 people lived in the three bedroom home, including 12 children ranging in age from 11 months-old to 15. The children had four different last names. Police were told that Cheryl Willow was looking after the five year-old boy, since his mother was incarcerated. She was listed in the report as the boy’s grandmother.
Also found in the house, in a backpack out in the open was two syringes with the needles exposed sticking out of a pocket. Also found was a bundle of small clear plastic bags used to package drugs, a spoon with suspected methamphetamine in it, a light bulb converted to a smoking pipe with methamphetamine residue inside and a pill cutter. One of the males inside the house was also found to have a MRSA infection. According to WebMD, “MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. It is one of many strains of a bacterium called Staphylococcus aureus — or staph, for short. Staph bacteria are common on skin and in noses.”
The children inside the home were an 11 month-old male infant, a 1 year-old male, a 2 year-old female, a 4 year-old female, a 5 year-old female, a 7 year-old female, an 8 year-old female, a 9 year-old female, a 12 year-old male, a 13 year-old female and a 15 year-old male. The children were not found to have any visible injuries.