Although the search for 9-year-old Bryson ended with authorities finding him in a safe location, that was not the end to the story.
His parents, Paul and Minette Thibodeaux were arrested and booked into the Evangeline parish jail Sunday morning on the charge of cruelty to juveniles.
Evangeline Parish Sheriff officials say Bryson and his sister appeared malnourished and that the children’s home living conditions were unkept.
News 10 spoke to one neighbor who wished to remain anonymous. She said in part, “We have been told that police found that home deplorable and inhumane… Some are saying those kids were sleeping in urine and feces on a mattress.”
Another woman told us “It was incredibly heartbreaking and infuriating. This couple sought out and signed up for the responsibility to love and take care of these children. I can not wrap my mind around anyone’s motive for harming or neglecting a child. I feel thankful that both children are removed from that situation.”
America’s Cajun Navy Founder, John Billiot, says it was disappointing to hear that despite all their work to bring the boy to safety, officials said he had not been safe in his own home.
That’s why, he tells us, he’s put together a fundraiser for the children.
“It’s to occupy their minds to where they’re not reminiscing about certain things. Bad things, possibly. So we’re doing this drive, getting Christmas presents and everything for them to keep positive and keep moving forward with these kids.”
If you wish to contribute to the fundraiser, you can click the link here: https://www.gofundme.com/bryson-and-sister-christmas?fbclid=IwAR0FocpOV6tSjSllmnteS8KYvvSEirsF-etoHhSbshxkFVccAQxb1ZRWOJQ