CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago police Friday discovered seven children under the age of 14 in a vacant home in East Garfield Park.
Officers responded to a call of a check of well being after a building manager checked on the apartment in the 700 block of North Trumbull Avenue shortly before 4 p.m. and found the children in a first floor apartment that would otherwise have been vacant, police said.
Inside police discovered a 14-year-old girl, an 11-year-old boy, a 7-year-old boy, a 6-year-old girl, a 4-year-old girl, a 5-year-old boy, and a 23-mont-old baby.
The first floor unit has been vacant for some time. That is why the building manager was surprised to hear a commotion inside. When he went to open the door he discovered an entire family.
The children were living in the unit. It does not appear they were abandoned, as a 31-year-old woman, believe to be their mother or a relative, was living in the vacant apartment, too.
All seven were taken to St. Mary’s Hospital in good condition.
The 31-year-old woman was being questioned Friday night.
The family’s case illustrates the hard times so many are facing in the community, says Pastor Donovan Price.
“In these times there’s probably even more people living like that,” Price said. “Just trying to survive trying to keep her children together. It’s very sad. People don’t know you can call 311 for many resources. We can always say they should have done this or that, but you never know what you’re going to do in that situation other than hold on. And that’s what this mother was doing. Some people just need a hand up.”
It is unclear if there was any heat in the vacant apartment.
Child Protective Services is now involved. The mother was not facing any criminal charges Friday night.
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