Local woman accused of felony child neglect

A 7-year-old child was allegedly locked out of his home all day and left to fend for himself because his mother was angry with her boyfriend.


On Tuesday, May 14, Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Carl Jones responded to a call regarding a suspicious incident. When he arrived, the caller informed him that a young boy had come to her home earlier and played with her son. While there, he told her his mother had locked him out of the house all day because she was mad at her boyfriend. The 7-year-old allegedly said the boyfriend told him to leave and not come back. The caller said she took the boy home to try to find out why the boy was not allowed in the house, but said when she knocked on the door, the boy’s mother would not open the door, and began to yell at her son through the door. The woman brought the boy back to her home and called law enforcement.

Jessica Allen


When Deputy Jones spoke with another witness, she said the little boy told her his mother told him he could sleep in the suitcase he had with him.


The young boy reportedly told Deputy Jones the only thing he had to eat all day was a cookie and that his mother finally gave him an almost empty two-liter bottle of soda to drink.


When Deputy Jones and the boy arrived at the boy’s home, they reportedly found the door unlocked, and the boy let the deputy in. They found the boy’s mother, identified as Jessica Allen, 46, Southwest 28th Street, lying on the couch, covered with a blanket. According to the report, the home was in an unsanitary condition, with empty soda cans on the floor and end tables. The couch had a garbage bag and loose garbage lying all over it. An open box cutter was lying on the couch where the boy allegedly slept. There were multiple black trash bags, full of trash, lying on the floor in the hallway. The kitchen sink was filled with dirty dishes, disposable cups and soda cans with mold growing on them. The kitchen counter had dirty dishes stacked on it. The stove held pots filled with rotten food. One bathroom had clothes on the floor and garbage in the sink. The master bathroom had trash bags filled with clothes covering the sink, tub and floor. The master bedroom had garbage and miscellaneous items strewn everywhere. The child’s room had toys everywhere, and the mattress was upright against the wall. The laundry room had trash bags filled with clothes on the floor and stacked up near the door. A marijuana grinder with suspected marijuana inside it was on the table beside the couch.


Deputy Jones reportedly called EMS to check on the well-being of Ms. Allen, but she refused care. The deputy then called Ms. Allen’s mother and asked her to come get the child.


Ms. Allen was arrested and charged with felony child neglect. Her bond will be set by the judge.

Cathy Womble is a staff writer for the Lake Okeechobee News.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment