Children poisoned by carbon monoxide, mother charged with child abuse
(KFOR) An Oklahoma woman is facing felony charges after her three children were hospitalized for high levels of carbon monoxide exposure.
Rebekkah Sterling, 35, was arrested by Chickasha police after authorities responded to the Chickasha Travel Plaza and booked on child endangerment charges. Online court records state Sterling faces three counts of child abuse by injury and three counts of child neglect.
A caller reported three children were having seizures on November 7.
According to Lt. Scott Weaver with the Chickasha Police Department, they were suffering from what turned out to be carbon monoxide poisoning.
"They were rigid. Officers were having trouble making them respond. They were very slow to respond. She had all the doors opened on the vehicle like she was trying to air it for some reason," Lt. Weaver said. "That kind of led to fire department to check and sure enough, there was a buildup of carbon monoxide in the vehicle that caused the children to have an episode."
Sterling reportedly told police, she knew about a possible exhaust leak and "took her vehicle to a shop, but nothing was properly fixed yet."
The report goes on to say all three children were in "filthy" condition with unwashed clothes, dirty fingernails, and various cuts and scrapes.
"They started checking into this and went farther into the vehicle and the vehicle was, of course, full of trash. Officer even made the observation when they opened up the center console that it had roaches coming out of the center console in the vehicle," Weaver said.
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