Hermann woman charged with five counts of child abuse
HERMANN - The Gasconade County Prosecutor's Office filed charges Wednesday against a woman accused of child abuse and neglect.
Jamie Wolf, 40, faces five felony counts of child abuse or neglect. According to court documents, Wolf caused injuries to two children, twins under two years of age, to whom she is not the biological mother.
Both children also tested positive for the presence of methamphetamine, according to court documents.
KOMU spoke with one neighbor, who chose to remain anonymous, and said he had no idea children lived there. "A month ago I had police up here for two dogs and that was the first I ever heard there were kids living in this house," the source said.
Wolf had been been caring for the children since April. According to the probable cause statement, on July 3, a police officer went to Wolf's home for a welfare check.
He reported finding the children with a number of unexplained bruises and scars, as well as eye infections serious enough to have swollen the children's eyes shut. The statement said the infections, if left untreated, could have led to permanent blindness.
One of the children also had a broken pelvis which was, according to the document, "approximately 2 weeks into the healing phase."
The children were taken to Children's Hospital in St. Louis for treatment, where one doctor said one of the children's condition "was such that death was a possibility."
The source told KOMU that these children were in a terrible location. "It's not a good situation when you've got little kids and you've got dogs that could tear them up," the neighbor said.
Family members who saw the children in May did not have the injuries observed by the same family in July, according to the probable cause statement. Police said Wolf had used Visine to try and deal with the eye infections, but did not seek professional medical treatment.
In an interview with Wolf, she allegedly said the children were "very clumsy and fall often." At one point, she told police, one child fell down the stairs, and the other fell off a toilet and hit her face on a bathtub. Wolf reportedly didn't seek medical help for the injuries in these cases. There was no explanation for the pelvis injury.
The neighbor said the neighborhood used to be a good place, but police have started coming through more frequently even before the arrest.
Four of Wolf's charges are Class D felonies, which each carry a maximum punishment of seven years in prison. She also faces a Class B felony, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.