Police responding to a well-being check of three children at an Edgewater Florid home Sunday found them, along with 246 animals of various species, all in “deplorable living conditions” according to a release from the Edgewater Police Department.
Police responding said the odor of animal urine and feces and living conditions were so overwhelming that the man's girlfriend tried to commit suicide, authorities said.
Authorities arriving at the home on Sunday found three children and 246 animals of various species at the home covered in feces and urine with some rooms that had ankle-deep garbage, police said.
The Edgewater chief of police was quoted as saying “I have been to many bad houses but that is probably the worst house I’ve ever entered, I felt bad for the little girls. It’s just sad.”
Three people living in the home face three counts of child abuse and 66 counts of animal cruelty.
It reportedly began when Gregg Nelson tried to break up with both his wife and his girlfriend, according to the Washington Post. When Susan Nelson refused to let her husband take his three daughters with him, he requested police visit the three-bedroom home he described as uninhabitable, according to an affidavit.
There were 95 mice, 83 rats, 14 birds, 12 rabbits, 10 sugar gliders, 10 guinea pigs, seven bearded dragons, four hamsters, four dogs, two cats, two geckos, and a tortoise and hedgehog in the home.
"It was immediately evident that neither the children nor the animals were being cared for properly," said police, who had visited the home five time in the past year but were not aware of the situation inside.The animals were taken to a shelter, while the girls—7, 9, and 10—were moved to a relative's house.
Below you can see the animal shelter staff and neighbors trying to help. Above is the police body cam as they walked through the house.