Police: 7-year-old girl locked in dog cage in Ohio basement weighed just 28 pounds

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CANTON, Ohio (WJW) – A yearlong investigation into child abuse led to the arrest of two people in Canton, Ohio.

In August of 2019, Child Protective Services contacted police about three children they believed were being abused in a Canton home.

Canton detectives found evidence that a 7-year-old girl was being locked in a dog cage in the basement as a form of punishment.

According to information from Canton police, the cage was secured with a padlock.

Police say the child weighed just 28 pounds.

Police also believe the same child was subject to excessive discipline that included using a wooden sign.

Two other children were removed from the home. Police do not believe they suffered similar punishment.

A Stark County grand jury returned an indictment on 29-year-old Lillian Cottrell, the mother of the 7-year-old, and her boyfriend, 30-year-old Derek Mayle, on Monday. Police were unable to immediately confirm the relationship of the couple to the two other children.

The indictment is for a 3rd-degree felony charge of endangering children. The two are now in custody.

Cottrell and Mayle are scheduled for arraignment in Stark County Common Pleas Court Friday.

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