Monday, August 19, 2019
Travis and Amy Headrick exit the courtroom at the Monroe County Justice Center Wednesday afternoon with their attorneys Jay Englund and John Matousek (not pictured.) Herald photo.

Melvina couple accused of caging kids plead not guilty

Travis and Amy Headrick, the Melvina couple accused of abusing their four adopted children and keeping two of them in “makeshift cages,” entered pleas of not guilty on all counts in Monroe County Circuit Court Wednesday afternoon during an arraignment before Judge Todd Ziegler.

The couple were arrested and released on a $20,000 cash bond each in August after a babysitter shared photos with investigators that were allegedly taken inside the couple’s home. According to the complaint, the photo shows one of the children, a 10-year-old boy, confined in a livestock trough secured shut with 17 industrial strength zip ties.

At a preliminary hearing on Jan. 2, the court heard testimony from Detective John Brose of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, who executed the search warrant at the Headrick’s residence on Aug. 24. Brose described finding the boy in the horse trough wearing nothing more than a diaper.

Inside the same room, an 11-year-old boy was reportedly locked in a homemade double-stacked wooden cage that required the use of a key to unlock. A 12-year-old girl was also reportedly found in a bedroom across the hallway with a door that could only be unlocked from the hallway.

All of the other bedroom doors, with the exception of the Headricks’ and their biological daughter’s, were allegedly armed with alarms.

Brose also testified that investigators were told of physical abuse in the residence at the hand of both Amy and Travis Headrick on various occasions. He said the two youngest children were allegedly struck with a rod and endured other punishments, included kicking, spanking, spraying the children with either scalding or cold water and holding their heads under water.

Amy Headrick, 39 has been charged with nine counts in her case, which include three counts of 2nd degree recklessly endangering safety, three counts neglecting a child causing emotional damage, two counts of false imprisonment and child abuse intending to cause harm.

Travis Headrick, 47 has been charged with the same nine counts in his case with an additional charge of child abuse intending to cause harm.

The counts of recklessly endangering safety carry a maximum penalty of a fine not to exceed $25,000 and imprisonment of not more than 10 years. The child abuse charges carry a maximum penalty of not more than six years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.

The counts of neglect also carry a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of not more than $25,000. Charges of false imprisonment carry a maximum penalty of not more than six years imprisonment and a fine not to exceed $10,000.

A pre-trial for the Headricks has been scheduled for June 10 and a plea/scheduling on July 8, where they both are expected to appear.

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