Texas teen kept prisoner in parent's closet

by Daniella Guzman

A Texas 13-year-old who was abused and lived in horror inside his own home is getting help from Child Protective Services.

CPS officials said the teen weighed 72 pounds, was malnourished and had several broken bones, punctured kidneys and pancreas, old scars and healed burn marks.
The teen told CPS that his mother and stepfather kept him locked inside a closet and only fed him Ensure food supplement every few days.

"He is doing much better," CPS spokeswoman Estella Olguin said. "He was isolated from the world. It's been hard gaining his trust, and getting him to open up to us about what happened."

Olguin said the teen first lied about his injuries, and said a cat scratched him, he fell off his bike, and that he was sick.

He later revealed the abuse.

Four other children lived in the same home, but CPS officials said they appeared healthy and not abused.

Those children are now in a foster home.

The child's injuries were discovered when the stepfather took the boy to the doctor when he found blood in his urine.

The doctor noticed the boy's injuries and called CPS.

Neighbors were shocked to learn the boy even existed.

"We only saw the other kids, never that child," said KJ Areranteria. "They are very reserved and to themselves. We only saw them a couple of times taking out the trash. They always drove straight up to their gated driveway and never came out."

The parents told neighbors their children were home-schooled, officials said.

The family moved to Houston from Las Vegas about two years ago.

They had a run-in with CPS in Las Vegas, and another one last year in Houston.

"Apparently somehow the parents convinced a doctor to say the child had a liver problem which caused the weight loss," said Olguin.

The parents are in the Harris County Jail facing charges of endangering a child. CPS said the teen and the other children will remain in foster homes until they decide if a family member will care for them.