*We’re talking a real-life Halloween horror story! A Texas mother and her boyfriend were charged Tuesday in the death of her 8-year-old son whose skeletal remains were found Sunday in an apartment where she had abandoned her three other kids.
According to ABC 13, Brian Coulter, 31, has been charged with murder, and the boy’s mother, Gloria Williams, 35, has been charged with injury to a child by omission and tampering with evidence, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez tweeted. Coulter reportedly beat the child to death and Williams allegedly did nothing to stop him. After the killing, Coulter covered the child’s body with a blanket and he and Williams fled the apartment.
Here’s more from the report:
The Harris County Sheriff’s Office said a 15-year-old boy at the CityParc II at West Oaks Apartments called and said his brother had been dead for a year in the room next to his. He also told deputies that his mom hasn’t been back in months, leaving him and his two other brothers, ages 7 and 10, alone. Before calling for help, the 15-year-old texted his mom to tell her he could not take it anymore.
Neighbors said the 15-year-old relied on them for food as the mother only visited occasionally to drop off “ noodles, drinks and chips” said neighbor Erica Chapman.
The teen was paranoid about getting poisoned so he would not accept cooked meals from neighbors.
A TWISTED NIGHTMARE: 3 young boys were left abandoned and in squalid conditions, with their dead brother slowly decomposing for a year. I spoke with two neighbors who have been feeding the 15 y/o for 6 months. They never knew the secrets he had to live with. More @abc13houston pic.twitter.com/LhCsOkmhap
— Brooke Taylor (@ABC13Brooke) October 25, 2021
Per the reports, the mother and her boyfriend moved to an apartment 15 minutes away in Westchase.
“We see them come and go,” one neighbor said of the couple. “We never saw any children. None.”
Another neighbor, Trevor Thompson, would also provide the teen with food.
“A few times I noticed the lights weren’t on, and it was quiet upstairs, so I figured there was trouble because the parents haven’t been there in a while,” Thompson said. “One day, he came here and knocked on the door and asked if he could use the charger, and we built a bond from there. I started offering him food because I knew he needed more than just a charger.”
Thompson and Chapman were unaware that there was a rotting corpse and two other kids inside the apartment. Chapman thinks the older brother kept his younger siblings secret out of fear.
“After finding out what happened [Sunday], I think he was more nervous and scared,” Chapman said. “Are they going to blame me for this? Are my parents going to punish me for this? Maybe his parents told him they would be separated if he told anyone.”
— Ed Gonzalez (@SheriffEd_HCSO) October 27, 2021
According to the sheriff’s office, all three boys were malnourished with injuries and taken to the hospital. The 7-year-old had facial fractures, sources said. The children are “special needs,” with police noting that the victim and his brothers are autistic.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services is seeking emergency custody of the 3 boys, per the report.
Family members say Williams was estranged from her relatives and they were unaware the kids were in crisis.