Edgecombe County deputies arrested four people and took two children into custody last week.
Deputies and representatives of the county Social Services were dispatched Sept. 27 to a house on the 1800 block of O’Neal Road in Whitakers after receiving a tip about unsanitary living conditions at the residence.
Sheriff James Knight said authorities found trash piled up inside and outside the home. Four adults, two children and 43 animals were at the residence, which was infested with insects, Knight said.
Cachet Turner, 37, Dustin Joe Turner, 21, Kyla Brelo, 20, and Joy Gurganus, 56, each were charged with 43 counts of animal cruelty and contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile and jailed on unsecured $10,000 bonds.
The children were taken from the home and placed with family members.
The animals were removed from the house and examined by veterinarians. All the animals, which consisted of dogs, cats and other small animals, suffered from various medical conditions ranging from malnourishment, flea infestation and mange.
Anyone interested in adopting any of the animals can call the Edgecombe County Animal Shelter at 252-641-4112.