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Complaint: Children with disabilities kept in makeshift cages in Monroe Co. home

Courtesy: Monroe Co. Jail
Courtesy: Monroe Co. Jail(WEAU)
Published: Aug. 27, 2018 at 10:26 AM CDT
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We’re now learning more details surrounding the couple that was arrested last week in Monroe County after a report of children being kept in cages.

Amy and Travis Headrick were charged Monday in Monroe County. The two were arrested last week after the criminal complaint says a witness sent a photo to investigators of children living in cages at the couple’s home in in Melvina. They face several counts, including neglecting a child, recklessly endangering safety and false imprisonment.

Police found five kids in the home: four adopted and one biological child. The complaint says the children were kept in rooms that were locked from the hallway, and inside one room, a deputy found makeshift cages on top of one another. One cage was a horse trough with metal fencing over the top of it, secured with 17 industrial strength zip ties. The witness said the cages were new, and were built after the previous wooden cages became maggot-invested.

When questioned, the complaint says Amy Headrick said the children had to be kept in cages because they were cognitively disabled and had behavior and incontinence problems. She reportedly told investigators, “I don’t consider it a cage; it’s more of a glorified crib.”

Both Amy and Travis told investigators they locked the children in the cages for their safety, so that the children wouldn’t hurt themselves.

A witness also told investigators the children were physically abused, saying that one child was punished by being held by the neck and head under the faucet while scolding hot or freezing water ran on the disabled child until he started listening. Deputies also listed in a search warrant that there was not enough food in the home to sustain the amount of people living there. A witness told deputies the four adopted children ate the same meal every day, three times a day: a bologna and cheese sandwich.

Also in the search warrant, investigators noted the home had no toys, no kid’s clothes or any evidence at all that children lived in the home. It also stated that Amy showed no sign of remorse or emotion when being taken into custody.

Travis and Amy are scheduled to make their initial appearances in Monroe County court on September 6.


SPARTA, Wis. (WEAU) --Deputies have released the names of the two people arrested in Monroe County for reportedly keeping children in a cage.

Travis and Amy Headrick, of Melvina, are scheduled to appear in court Monday afternoon for their bond hearing.

The pair was arrested last week after deputies got a call that the two were keeping children in makeshift cages at a home.