A pair of 2-year-old West Virginia twins were rescued by the authorities after being allegedly locked up inside a filthy room for weeks together by their parents and their mother's boyfriend.

The trio responsible for the children's condition were arrested and were facing charges for the horrific abuse.

Deputies discovered the children's plight after one of the twins was found unresponsive inside the home in Jackson County on Monday, according to the New York Post.

"The 2-year-old boy was in complete renal failure and was in a very, very dire situation," Jackson County Sheriff Ross H. Mellinger said, as quoted by WOWK.

Investigators learned the three adults allegedly used a "padlock-type" device to lock the children inside the bedroom for as many as six weeks at a time.

"Once our officers began their investigation, it was discovered that the twin 2-year-old boys had, basically, been locked in a Hell-on-Earth type of situation within their apartment room," Mellinger said.

The children's parents, identified as Michael Gillenwater and Lylee Gillenwater of Ripley, would allegedly self-medicate the children for long periods of time to force them to sleep. Lylee's boyfriend, Brian Casto, was also allegedly involved in the severe child neglect incident.

"The room appeared to only have two small crib style mattresses laying on the floor that were completely soiled with urine and feces," the criminal complaint said. "This room had an external lock on the outside of the door which would not allow anyone inside of the room to exit."

The adults would also allegedly feed the twins nothing apart from cereal and pieces of ground beef, which were allegedly shoved inside the room from underneath the door.

"The neglect had reached such a level that one of the 2-year-olds had lost consciousness and was on death's door when the notification was made to the sheriff's office," Mellinger said. "These boys need lots of prayers right now."

Both the boys received medical attention, and Mellinger said the child with kidney failure was now stable. However, the authorities were not sure if he would survive.

Investigators said the children's father lived upstairs, while his wife and her boyfriend stayed in the basement of the residence.

Another female juvenile was also found inside the house and was also removed from the home. Her relationship to the adults in the house was not immediately clear.

"Every time you see an incident like this, it really puts a lot of things in perspective, not only from a law enforcement standpoint, but from a parental standpoint," said Mellinger. " ... I think it's fair to say that, given the circumstances at hand, I think the average barnyard animal would probably provide better parental care and nurturing than what these kids were afforded through the three adults living in this home."

The children's father was charged with two counts of child neglect with serious risk of injury or death and child neglect resulting in injury. Their mother faces two counts of child neglect resulting in injury, while her boyfriend faces one count of child abuse resulting in injury and one count of child abuse with risk of injury.

Representational image (child)
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