BROWNSBURG – Morgan County court documents reveal that a Brownsburg mother kept her house in such a disgusting state that her 8-year-old son “smelled of death” when his father picked him up.
Indiana State Police discovered dead dogs inside and outside the house, stinking and/or rotting, with feces, urine, and blood mixed on the floors and walls and permeating the air.
At one point, the mother is accused of driving around with a dead dog in the back of her car the smell so rancid that her son told police he almost “puked.”
Jennifer Lair, 32, was charged on May 16th with two counts of neglect of a dependent, a Level 6 felony, along with two counts of animal cruelty.
Several live dogs and a pig were found at Lair’s home and taken by Morgan County Animal Control. The animals were all found to be in poor health and were found to not be receiving adequate nutrition.
However, an investigation into Lair revealed that she had a history of animal abuse and neglect.
Lair is facing multiple charges of animal cruelty. These charges were brought against her in July 2021, after a neighbor noticed a trash bag with a dog’s paw sticking out outside Lair’s house.
The odor was so strong that a neighbor told police she could smell the dead animal in her own backyard. Police eventually requested assistance from animal control in their investigation of Lair’s home, which had “animal feces in almost every room,” according to police.
According to court documents, five dead dogs were discovered inside and outside her home, as well as dead ducklings and chicks discovered in the garage and a dead cat discovered on the kitchen floor.
According to court documents, the Brownsburg investigation into Lair began on May 16 when a Hendricks County Department of Child Services case manager alerted police of Lair’s 8-year-old son reportedly living in deplorable conditions.
The 8-year-old reportedly told the DCS worker that he wanted to stay at his dad’s house in Mooresville because his mother’s home in Brownsburg was disgusting. The child later told police his mother was “lazy” and would “play on her phone all day” while ordering him to clean up dog poop before he gets a “whoopin’”.
Police were advised that six dogs and two cats were supposedly in Lair’s Brownsburg home on South Locust Lane despite her not being able to have pets in her home due to her pending Morgan County charges. When police and animal control went to Lair’s home on May 16, a dead dog was found inside a trash can.
Animal control searched the home after obtaining a warrant and discovered it to be in “disarray” and “filthy,” and police stated that it did not appear to be suitable for living.
The boy described a situation in which there was a dead dog on the couch for several days.
On May 22, Morgan County Sheriff’s Deputies made contact with Lair in Brooklyn. Deputies reported seeing a dead dog in a cage inside the vehicle. Lair told deputies the dog had died while she ran in Walmart on May 20. Police said the dead dog reeked so badly it could be smelled from “20 to 30 yards”. When deputies asked Lair why she hadn’t removed the animal due to the extreme odor she “blamed it on COVID” and said she “could not smell it.”
Lair’s Morgan County pretrial release was revoked and she was arrested and taken to Morgan County jail on May 24.
When police spoke with Lair’s son, the 8-year-old told officers he moved into the Brownsburg home in February 2022. He described the home as smelling like a dead dog and said his mom once threw a dog out in the trash. He said once there was a dead dog on the couch and said his mother wouldn’t feed the dogs. He said the animals would go to the bathroom “everywhere inside the house” and advised he didn’t feel safe with his mother.
The police thanked the father for taking action and removing the boy from Lair’s home.