Three abandoned children and the skeletal remains of a fourth person who was likely their sibling were found Sunday in an apartment west of downtown Houston, authorities said.
The Harris County Sheriff's Office got a call from a 15-year-old boy, who reported the body of his 9-year-old brother was in the room next to his, the agency said in a statement. The boy had been dead for a year, and the parents had not lived in the apartment for "several months," the teen told the sheriff's office, according to the statement.
When deputies arrived, they found the "remains of a small child, which appeared consistent with the age provided by the 15-year-old" and two other boys in the house under the age of 10, the sheriff's office said.
The boys appeared malnourished, showed signs of physical injury and were brought to a hospital, according to officials.
Authorities located the mother of the children and her boyfriend. Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said Monday morning that they had been interviewed and released. No charges have been filed and the investigation is ongoing.
Gonzalez on Sunday called the situation “heartbreaking.”