State takes custody of twins allegedly abused by parents in Chillicothe

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CHILLICOTHE, Mo. -- Twin brothers are in the custody of the state of Missouri after investigators at an emergency room determined they were victims of child abuse. Prosecutors say the infants suffered injuries at the hands of their parents earlier this week.

Cassie Jane Adkins and Douglas Eugene Weese face first degree felony charges of endangering the welfare of a child after prosecutors determined a bruise and broken wrist on one infant and a head abrasion on the other infant were the results of abuse. The pair was arrested this week and arraigned Friday morning in Livingston County. As of Friday morning, both were behind bars at the Daviees/Dekalb Regional Jail.

“My baby is close to the same age and it was tough at first to work this investigation,” said investigating detective, and new father himself, Jon Maples.

But Det. Maples said he has to keep an open mind and conduct a fair investigation. He said the parents “admitted to being a little too rough with the children and not treating them the way they should.”

“It is uncommon to see injuries like this to infants. Any time we work an investigation for a juvenile victim, we do want to do it for their safety and to make a better life for them,” he said.

Maples said at first, Adkins and Weese tried to lie before changing their minds.

“They did get together and try to get their story straight so they wouldn’t get into trouble,” he said.

He said ultimately the statements showed “the parents admitting to be responsible for the injuries sustained to the infants.”

Police said the pair admitted to having anger issues, being rough with the babies, and getting frustrated. Tom Underwood, the couple’s neighbor, said the pains of parenting are no excuse for abuse.

“There is opportunity for new mothers, new fathers to go down and take parenting classes and to find out what to do and what not to do,” Underwood said.

Underwood lives across the street from the couple and had seen his newest little neighbors.

“Oh they’re little tiny guys. You know, they were cute. She asked me if I wanted to hold them, but babies leak you know,” he said.

Underwood said the news of abuse didn’t sit well.

“Oh that’s terrible! Those little babies, they don’t have anybody to stand up for them, especially if their mom and dad aren’t going to do it,” he said.

The father of six also offered advice to any new parent: “Babies are real soft and their little bones break and you have to be gentle with babies. I’m sorry about the babies. I’m glad they’re safe.”

The three-month-old twins are in state custody, their parents are due in court for a preliminary hearing on May 6.

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