The parents of a 14-year-old Dalzell, SC, girl have been charged with child neglect after authorities found the girl living in a tent a quarter mile from the family home, banished for a week as punishment, the sheriff’s department said.
Crystal Lynn Driggers, 36, and James Allen Driggers, 33, allegedly set up the tent in a wooded area, gave the girl a roll of toilet paper, a flashlight, a whistle and a watch and told her to stay away for a week. She was instructed to appear at a fence on the family property at a specific time each day if she wanted food. Sumter County Sheriff’s Department investigators were told.
The girl was banished from her home, parents and dour siblings for eating a Pop-Tart, the sheriff’s department said.
It’s not the first time the girl had been denied access to her home, investigators were told. In the past month, she was allegedly prohibited from entering the home between 8am and 6pm each day.
When violent thunderstorms rolled through the Midlands Thursday night, “the child was also left to fend for herself ,” a news release from the sheriff’s department said.
Crystal and James Driggers were being held at the Sumter-Lee Detention Center awaiting a bond hearing Friday night. While the girl was in the custody of the Department of Social Services, her four siblings were with their grandparents.