'Deplorable' find in parents' home after toddler runs up the street

·2-min read

Children were found living in "deplorable" living conditions after a toddler was found walking down the street all alone, in just his nappy.

Just before 6am on Sunday, a two-year-old boy was found running up and down a road in northern California.

He was in just a nappy and was clutching a bag of candy, Redding Police Department said in a statement. A good Samaritan had stopped to help and held on to the boy until police arrived at the scene.

At the time, it was about 16 degrees Celsius, and the boy was shivering and cold to the touch, while he seemed to be otherwise fine, he was taken to the hospital as a precaution.

The children were found to be living in
The children were found to be living in "deplorable" conditions. Source: Redding Police Department

Over the past year, the same toddler had been found wandering away from his home, under similar circumstances, police said.

Police then went to the toddler's home, there, they found his nine-year-old brother sleeping on the couch and his parents Joshua Billing, 45, and Nicole Shreve, 38.

Billing and Shreve were completely oblivious to their son being missing from the home and the inside of the home shocked authorities.

"Officers found absolutely deplorable living conditions inside the residence," Redding Police Department said.

The toddler has three older children, and all siblings have been taken into protective custody. Source: Redding Police Department
The toddler has three older children, and all siblings have been taken into protective custody. Source: Redding Police Department

"The floors and furniture were dirty and covered in food, and the home appeared to be infested with insects. Officers also found drug paraphernalia inside the home."

Billing and Shreve have four children, a 15-year-old boy, a 12-year-old girl, the nine-year-old and the toddler.

The parents, Joshua Billing and Nicole Shreve, pictured after they were arrested. Source: Redding Police Department
The parents, Joshua Billing and Nicole Shreve, were arrested. Source: Redding Police Department

The elder siblings were not at home when the police arrived, however, they were located at separate residences.

All of the children have been placed in protective custody and Billing and Shreve have been arrested and booked for child endangerment.

Billing was also booked on a charge of possessing ammunition, despite being prohibited.

Do you have a story tip? Email: newsroomau@yahoonews.com.

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting