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Mother of two children shot near 37th & Hadley faces child neglect charges

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- A 25-year-old Milwaukee mother is facing child neglect charges after city workers discovered cockroaches and feces throughout her home. Police were led to the home after two of the woman's seven children suffered gunshot wounds when they were struck by gunfire during a gun battle on Wednesday, July 23rd in the area of 37th and Hadley.

Octavia Burton is facing seven counts of child neglect.

Octavia Burton

Octavia Burton

The shooting happened just before 7:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 23rd.

Police say Burton and a man were in a van with her seven children — between the ages of two and 11 when the shooting occurred.

Police say the man got into some sort of altercation with others in the neighborhood — and that’s when the gun battle ensued.

Some of the bullets hit the side of a home in the area, and others hit the 10-year-old boy and 11-year-old girl.

Police said the children’s mother, later identified as Burton, drove them to the hospital.

Police say their investigation into the shooting let them to a house not far away -- where the mother was living with her seven children.  Police say city workers discovered cockroaches and feces throughout the home.

According to the criminal complaint, upon entering the residence, officers noted a strong odor of dog urine and feces through the entire residence.

The criminal complaint indicates that officers observed insect infestation in every room. Additionally, officials noted that they located a mattress in a closet which was covered in well over 100 insects, including roaches.

Officials also discovered both old and fresh dog feces in a metal crate, a pantry and a stairwell.The complaint indicates the living room floor was covered with ten garbage bags, which were filled with dirty clothes and insects.

Within minutes of entering the residence, a DOC agent terminated the search due to the overpowering smell.

WARNING: The pictures below may be disturbing to some

According to the criminal complaint, the house was condemned, and the children were placed with Child Protective Services.

The Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Care and Control (MADACC) also responded to the scene and picked up five "malnourished, and insect-infested dogs."

A neighbor says something didn't seem right about the way the house was run -- but he says he had no idea the conditions inside were this bad.

"I'm on the outside looking in, so I don't know the condition of the house. The number of dogs -- I thought that was just too many for one house," Jimmy White said.

During a press conference last Thursday, following Wednesday's shooting, Police Chief Ed Flynn said Burton had recently regained custody of her children after losing them due to child abuse. She was charged with three counts of child abuse back in 2012.

"I would see them in the morning on school days. He would walk his kids to the corner to get on the school bus," Jimmy White said.

During Thursday's press conference, Chief Flynn called out both parents.

"Do these kids have a chance?  Do kids have a chance who are put in harm's way by reckless parents?" Chief Flynn said.

FOX6 News reached out to the Department of Children and Families. It says it cannot comment on specific cases -- but says families are only reunited with court approval after a parent completes all of the steps in a court-ordered case plan.

It is unclear whether Burton's plan included an in-home visit.

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32 comments

  • Ubiquitous King

    This woman has drug issues and undiagnosed psychological issues, this information will soon come out in the investigation. She was not fit to have the children psychologically any way. The fact that the children were back in her custody is shocking seeing that CPS was aware of her condition.

    • me

      So she kept popping them out and had seven kids at the age of 25?!? If she wasn’t mentally stable to have kids, she shouldn’t have so many!!!

  • Juicy

    What is CPS good for? All they do is make excuses while children are obviously not in the best hands with their parents. WAKE UP CPS WORKERS DO YOUR JOB.

    • Danielle

      Not hardly James. That is the welfare system of old days, which also drew people from IL, IN, MI, etc. The more heads, the more money. Since about 1996, WI implemented welfare reform. Regardless of the number of children, a family gets $600 something.

    • Kristy Brown

      One the more kids you have you don’t get more money. You only get 673 if that much. And some punk a.. Foodstamps. CPS are not doing their job. Parents our kids come first. Kill the insects and and fix that nasty tub. Her mom or family member should stopped her at one. Dumbass in my momma Hatti’s voice.

  • Mr. Scooba Stevo

    The problem wasn’t caused by a “white man”. The problem was caused by their NEGLECTFUL mother! The “white man” just entered, and thank god found this out before one of the kids had serious health issues!

  • anonymous

    I think its sad that this woman did jail time for abusing these children and cps still returned them this is a prome example of how cps fail these children and feed them to the wolves I am a proud mother of 7 soon to be 8 children and could never imagine letting my children live in these conditions them poor babies why keep having them if you have no intentions or ability to care for them I feel that cps definitely needs to be called out on this one for returning the children under the circumstances. Wow what a messed up system mental state or not cps knew this and all I can ask is why?

  • donovan

    First off she is not everybody know who the media can turn the anyone into a vilen. And she dident have. Drug. Issues. Everybody’s. Quick to judge. Look at your self first

  • diane

    Really Donovan…she should be spayed. ..so she has no more children. …she is poor excuse for a human being….she should never ever have contact with those kids again….how many baby daddy’s. I wonder…geez

  • Shonnie

    I’m pretty sure she wasn’t living it up only gettin 656 on w2 and some food stare benefits..However it’s a struggle with 1 so I can’t even imagine 7 at 25.No child or human being should have to live like this.Its embarrassing and sick and she probably thinks she was doing the best she could but I wonder if she got off her behind to do a job application and try to obtain more income for them.This is not CPS fault or”the white man” it’s her fault for not cleaning that trifling house!They may not have everything but a clean home would’ve probably meant the world

  • stan

    She’s a filthy person, gross gross and gross!!!!! How is this a white persons fault, really? Im sick of the racist stupid people. Get off your butt get a job and clean up your community. I’m by no means racist but come on people …. two of her children where shot because of incompetent “people” who is suppose to protect them & failed to do their job as a parent atleast now they are out of the filth they where subjected to..maybe now CPS will do their job, I don’t care if purple aliens where living there. These kids deserve much better and living like that is only setting them up for failer in their future.

  • anonymous teacher

    Everything starts from the home. Who would lay up in that mess to even make a baby? Mental illness and drugs im assuming.
    I think there needs to be a law for unfit people having babies. Im sorry people want to deny gays the right to marry but not deny a woman like this birth rights. It is a set up.
    And people (incl. Scotty) want to say public school teachers are not doing their job.

  • Z

    CPS should be Child UN-Protective Service. What a joke they are. Glad the tax money I WORK to pay is getting used so this Ho can pop out kid after kid after kid. Sterilize this skank before she has 7 more kids by the time she is 30.

  • Beth

    As a mother, these pictures just tare me apart, so sad these little ones were forced to live this way, so sad they have parents that could careless about them, so sad they had to have such a horrible start to life. I really hope this lady never gets her kids back. Foster care can be horrible as well, but could it be worse than what these poor kids have already been through?! You wonder why kids grow up and turn sour, turning to gangs, drugs and violence…these are the reasons. Hope you’re proud of yourself so called parents of these children!

    • Mobetta Jenkem

      Probably a fresh, pre-fermentation batch of jenkem being prepared.
      I’m glad the authorities shut down that charming little operation before it had progressed to the hallowed charred oak cask or beechwood aging stage, however. You see, I simply hate having competition…

  • renee

    The system is so messed up and backwards. The reason I say this is because how can they allowed this young lady to get her children back and she is living in this type of condition. I believe they didn’t even go to the house to see how she was living, they just gave them back without checking. I have a nephew who is trying to get custody of his kids but he is having such a hard time getting them. He is a young black male, working and taking care of his wife and his other kids. This caseworker is trying her hardest to keep him from getting them. Now you tell me, how many young black men are willing and able to do what a man is suppose to do. Don’t get me wrong, I am just looking at how the system is so messed up. You would think that they would want the kids with there family but know days there is no care and no compassion its all about the money.

  • Chyna

    People should stop judging and criticizing, at the end of the day thoses children still have to go to school with other kids n face the word, Praying people lets just keep her and the children in prayer, there is no job to big for God…..

Comments are closed.

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