MOUNT MORRIS – A local justice provided additional legal protections for a 4-year-old girl with special needs whom her parents allegedly locked in her room for days.
According to our news partner 13WHAM, the Justice issued a no-offensive contact order of protection against Mekial McLean, 27, and Cody McLean, 28, which would result in misdemeanor or felony Criminal Contempt charges if it is violated by endangering the child. Livingston County Child Protective Services returned both the girl and her nearly two-year-old brother to the parents.
“Being with someone known is always better for the child,” said Diane Deane, Commissioner of the Livingston County Department of Social Services, on March 1. “You can imagine how traumatic that would be, for a young child to be removed from their home. We always work in the best interests of the child.”
The order of protection allows the child to remain in the parents’ care.
Deane added that DSS is still involved in the case and that the family must establish a DSS-approved safety plan for the child to stay with a friend or family member for the child to be returned.
Both Mekial and Cody McLean are charged with misdemeanor Endangering the Welfare of a Child for allegedly locking the girl in her room for days. Mount Morris Police said that the girl would have to urinate and defacate in her room while locked inside and did not receive proper medical checkups and attention.
Both Mekial and Cody McLean will return to Mount Morris court at a later date.