Couple charged after handcuffed children found in vehicle

Regional News

WHITE OAK, Pa. (AP) — Authorities say a western Pennsylvania couple forced their children to sleep in locked basement rooms, physically abused them and handcuffed them.

Thirty-seven-year-old Richard Hayes, of Mount Oliver, and his 26-year-old girlfriend, Natosha Bell, of Rankin, both face more than a dozen charges involving three children who lived in their home. It wasn’t known Friday if either one has retained an attorney.

Authorities say White Oak police responded to an elementary school Wednesday after the eldest child refused to get into the couple’s vehicle during a school pick up. Witnesses say the 11-year-old boy clung to a school employee and said he didn’t want to be handcuffed again. Two other handcuffed boys were then found in the vehicle’s backseat.

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