A couple reportedly living in a room at a Smithfield motel are facing several charges after law enforcement officers were initially summoned to a motel parking lot.
Smithfield Police said they were dispatched to a call around 11:20am Saturday, March 20th reporting a dog was running at large in the parking lot of Becky’s Log Cabin Motel at 2491 Highway 70 East and chasing two naked children, later determined to be ages 4 and 5.
Police arrived just as the children ran into a room to escape from the dog. The dog began barking at officers who summoned Johnston County Animal Control. Animal control arrived and while attempting to capture the animal it charged at officers. Police tased the dog and the animal ran away.
Police said the two children were found living in an “unsanitary room” that was “nearly unlivable.” The child’s parent had reportedly left the juveniles unattended while they went to a methadone clinic. The parents returned about an hour after police had first arrived on the scene. The dog also belonged to the couple.
Officers charged Preston Chase Parker, 29, and Alisa Ann Stewart, 24, of 2491 Highway 70 East, Room 52, with child abuse, possession of marijuana paraphernalia, and a leash law violation. The Johnston County Department of Social Services was contacted and placed the children in the custody of a relative. Both Parker and Stewart were cited on the charges and released at the scene.
No injuries were reported.