White West Virginia couple compelled their adopted black kids to work as slaves and reside in barn

White West Virginia couple compelled their adopted black kids to work as slaves and reside in barn

A pair who’ve been accused of locking up their adopted black kids and forcing them to work as slaves have been despatched behind bars as soon as once more.

Donald Ray Lantz, 63, and Jeanne Kay Whitefeather, 62 of Charleston, West Virginia, plead not responsible on Tuesday to over a dozen new expenses after their children have been discovered locked in a dilapidated shed after laboring on the encircling farmland.

The brand new expenses included human trafficking of a minor youngster, use of a minor youngster in compelled labor, and youngster neglect creating substantial danger of significant bodily damage or loss of life.

Their bond has now been set to $500,000 every – which is $300,000 greater than every of their unique bonds. 

The couple’s first arrest passed off in October after it was found that the couple’s 5 adopted kids, all of whom have been black, have been compelled to reside in a locked barn below squalor circumstances.

A pair accused of locking up their adopted black kids of their yard shed (pictured) and forcing them into youngster slavery have been despatched behind bars as soon as once more

Donald Ray Lantz, 63, and Jeanne Kay Whitefeather, 62 of Charleston, West Virginia , plead not guilty on Tuesday to over a dozen new charges

Donald Ray Lantz, 63, and Jeanne Kay Whitefeather, 62 of Charleston, West Virginia , plead not guilty on Tuesday to over a dozen new charges

Donald Ray Lantz, 63, and Jeanne Kay Whitefeather, 62 of Charleston, West Virginia , plead not responsible on Tuesday

The most recent indictment claims the couple is responsible of human rights violations, speculating that the couple compelled their kids into exhausting labor due to their race. 

Kanawha County Circuit Decide Maryclaire Akers advised MetroNews that this case is the primary of its form that has seen in her profession and that the couple’s unique bond of $200,000 was inadequate in comparison with the severity of their crimes.

‘Together with human trafficking and neglect was critical danger of bodily accidents or loss of life, I do not discover the bond to be adequate,’ Akers mentioned. ‘It alleges human trafficking, human rights violations, using compelled labor.’

‘Human rights violations particular to the truth that these kids have been focused due to their race and so they have been used mainly as slaves from what the indictment alleges.’

Prosecutors beforehand raised issues that the couple’s $400,000 bond cash in February may need come from their alleged human trafficking actions.

Kanawha County Assistant Prosecuting Legal professional Christopher Krivonyak reported that the couple, who beforehand claimed to don’t have any belongings or earnings, bought an 80-acre ranch in Tonasket, Washington for $725,000 on February 2. 

Three days later, Whitefeather’s brother posted two $200,000 bonds to get the couple out of the jail cells they have been being held in.  

Then on March 28, Krivonyak famous that that they had additionally bought their dwelling in Sissonville, the place they have been arrested, for $295,000.

Prosecutors concluded that regardless of whether or not or not the cash was obtained legally, it was initially supposed for human trafficking.

The couple’s cash remains to be within the custody of the courtroom, which Krivonyak mentioned ought to be transferred to the kids within the type of a belief fund.

The minors concerned have been aged 16, 14, 11, 9, and 6.  

Whitefeather beforehand acknowledged that the barn the place the 16-year-old woman and 14-year-old boy have been discovered was a ‘teenage clubhouse,’ and so they weren’t held their towards their will.

Pictured: Photos from inside a Sissonville shed where two teenagers were allegedly found locked inside on Oct. 2, were shown during a bond hearing for Jeanne Whitefeather in October 2023. The photos were taken by Whitefeather's brother about a week following the arrests

Pictured: Images from inside a Sissonville shed the place two youngsters have been allegedly discovered locked inside on Oct. 2, have been proven throughout a bond listening to for Jeanne Whitefeather in October 2023. The images have been taken by Whitefeather’s brother a couple of week following the arrests

The children were found by authorities with an array of health problems

The kids have been discovered by authorities with an array of well being issues 

Nonetheless, the teenage woman advised deputies that they had been locked within the constructing for about 12 hours and have been final given meals within the morning.

The constructing solely had a small RV porta-potty and no operating water, in accordance pictures from inside and the preliminary police report. 

The kids have been additionally compelled to sleep on the exhausting concrete flooring, they mentioned.  

Court docket paperwork mentioned neighbors reported that the kids have been compelled into farm labor and weren’t allowed inside the primary home.

Filings additionally state that the teenage boy wreaked of physique odor and had ‘open sores on his naked ft.’

Deputies discovered the nine-year-old woman inside the primary home three hours after police arrived on the scene.

Lantz got here dwelling with the 11-year-old boy, whereas Whitefeather surrendered their six-year-old woman to authorities, who has been with associates from the couple’s church.

Their trial is ready for September 9. 

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