DeLand, FL – Three children, ages 5, 4, and 3-years-old are in DCF custody after being removed from terrible living conditions in their parents home. The parents, 52-year-old Walter Milane and 34-year-old Tara Milane were arrested. Each was charged with three counts of child neglect.
Volusia County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a call from a DCF worker on Friday (July 12) after Tara Milane closed the door in his face when he came to check on the children’s welfare. A deputy knocked on the door asking Tara to come outside to speak with him. Deputies standing inside of the front entryway to the residence could smell an extremely foul odor coming from inside the home.
The incident report states that a large amount of soiled clothing covered the surface of the floor. As the clothing was walked on, numerous cockroaches were seen scurrying around. There were also numerous cockroaches on the walls and the ceiling in the entryway. Tara was informed that DCF had received many complaints that the children were living in deplorable conditions.
Tara appeared to be apprehensive about letting DCF and VCSO investigate the residence. A deputy informed her that with what had been discovered in the entryway, the foul smell in the residence and the fact that DCF was already investigating, law enforcement would be back to check on the children’s well-being. Upon hearing this, Tara allowed entry into the residence.
Once inside the residence, deputies reported that the foul odor was overwhelming. They found two dogs kept in a small cage that had fecal matter in it. There were cockroaches all over the soiled dishes in the sink, on the tabletops and the floor. There was what appeared to be fecal matter in a child’s toilet and in a pet’s food dish in the bathroom. There were dead and live cockroaches in the refrigerator with the food. When kitchen cabinets were opened, the cockroaches fell out because there were so many.
The children’s room was every bit as bad as the rest of the home with an extremely soiled mattress with no sheets on it. There was what appeared to be fecal matter on the mattress and on the walls. When asked about it, Tara said one of the children liked to smear his feces on the wall. The report stated that Tara appeared to think this type of behavior was normal.
Even the children appeared to be soiled. One of them hugged one of the deputies who reported her skin was sticky and she was wearing soiled clothes that had a pungent odor. The physical condition of the children appeared to be ok as they did not appear to be underweight. Deputies determined that Walter and Tara Milane were willfully abusing the children by not providing them with adequate healthy living conditions.
The DCF worker waited for a family member who did not show up to pick up the children. DCF took them into protective custody. Walter and Tara Milane were charged with Felony Child Neglect with bond set for each at $7,500. They have bonded out of jail but are set for arraignment on August 14, 2019.