Parents Caught Allegedly Keeping Children in Cages

Parents Caught Allegedly Keeping Children in Cages

( – Media outlets recently erupted after law enforcement officials arrested a couple of University of Florida biological scientists. They were allegedly keeping their children in cages.

On Wednesday, December 13, Fox 35 Orlando reported that police officers arrested 35-year-old Dustin Huff and his partner Yurui Xie, 31, for allegedly locking their kids in homemade cages for hours at a time while they left the house for work or other purposes. Likewise, the couple reportedly kept them locked up sometimes overnight.

Law enforcement became involved after the couple’s six-year-old son told school officials he didn’t want to go home after classes because his parents would put him into a cage his father made. School officials notified the Florida Department of Children and Families, and the agency launched an investigation into the allegations. They later turned the probe of the officials with the Gainesville Police Department.

Investigators visited the home to look into the allegations involving the school-aged boy and his two-year-old sibling. Media outlets reported that officers discovered a “large, unsanded, wooden enclosure” constructed with 2x4s that appeared to serve as a “makeshift cage.” The wooden structure had two stainless steel barrel bolts attached to its door to keep it closed.

Police reports viewed by the Miami Herald confirmed that the boy told investigators his father made the enclosure for him. The boy said his parents locked him in the cage when he returned from school, sometimes leaving him barricaded inside until he had to get up for classes the following morning at about 7 a.m. local time.

The University of Florida suspended the couple shortly after their arrest. Their since-deleted Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences staff directory listings showed that Huff worked as a biological scientist for the school’s horticulture sciences department since December 2017. Xie worked as a safety manager for the plant pathology department since the university hired her in June 2019.

The couple faces one felony count of child neglect and two felony aggravated child abuse counts. They were released on bonds set at $600,000 each. It remains unclear when the court scheduled their next appearance.

Copyright 2023,