The police had been called when the 14-year-old boy was found unresponsive. When the police arrived they found the boy on the front lawn, apparently put there by the parents in the hopes that the emergency officials would not go inside the home. When they did, they found more young girls and boys as well as a home overrun by animals of all kinds.
According to media reports, the teenage boy died from bronchopneumonia. The teen had been taken to a local hospital where he was declared dead. Inside the home were three other teens, aged 12 through 17. All of them were malnourished and sick. Another young woman, aged 18, was also found in the home and also was ill.
The mother of the family said that all of the children had gotten sick with a stomach virus around September 4. However, she told police that she felt all of the children were getting better when the boy suddenly took a turn for the worst.
When the police entered the home, they found a menagerie of animals. There were dozens and dozens of cats, and police said the cats were the worst off. They were severely malnourished, dirty and mean. Among the animals found there were birds, cats, dogs, squirrels, one raccoon, two monkeys and two kinkajous.
Police have arrested the mother and she was still in Berwyn police custody as of Friday night. No charges had yet been filed, but the home had been declared a health hazard. The animals had been taken away by Animal Control for evaluation and treatment for those that could be saved.