Charges: Butterfield man’s children test positive for meth, E. coli after being removed from garbage house

(St. James, MN) – A Butterfield man faces criminal charges, accused of neglecting his young children and exposing them to meth.

In October, Watonwan County investigatorsresponded to a call of child neglect in Butterfield at the home 27-year-old Jackson Phillip Clanton, who they found sleeping on the couch, according to the criminal complaint.

Court documents say Clanton and his four children, ages 4 and under, lived at the home, which police describe as in “significant disarray.”  Every room of the home contained garbage, dirty clothes and food containers, according to the complaint.

Clanton told investigators that the water was still on in the house, but he was using electric heaters, because there was no gas.  Police say two of the children were wearing coats and snow pants.  The children were barefoot and their feet black from the dirty floors, according to the complaint.

The children were removed from the house and put into protective custody.  Two of the children had dirty diapers that were sagging from excess urine and fecal matter oozing up their backs, according to court documents.   The children received medical care, and two tested positive for methamphetamine.  All four children were positive for E. coli and suffered from diarrhea for weeks.  Two of the children also had elevated levels of lead in their blood.

The complaint says Clanton told police he had seen the children eating paint chips.  He admitted to smoking meth when the children were in the house, but said he kept it confined to the upstairs or the garage.  He told police he’d seen his two middle children eating their own feces, but said they all had E. coli because the house was so messy.

Clanton was charged Wednesday in Watonwan County Court with felony causing or permitting a child to be exposed to meth, and gross misdemeanor child neglect.  He is summoned to appear in court on December 18.

Photo credit: Pixabay

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