Relatives of boys found living abandoned with their deceased brother's remains speak out
HOUSTON - Relatives of the boys found abandoned and living with their deceased brother’s body at a west Harris Co. apartment are speaking out Wednesday.
BACKGROUND: HCSO: 3 children abandoned, skeletal remains of another child found in Harris Co. apartment
Officials said the boys were between the ages of 15, 10, and 7-years-old were all malnourished and had physical injuries.
Deputies with the Harris County Sheriffs Office say two of the boys may be special needs. Family members say they believe the children have four fathers, two of which are believed to be dead and two are incarcerated.
MORE: 'This one affected us:' HCSO officials describe finding skeletal remains, abandoned boys
Melody Robinson is the biological grandmother of Gloria Williams’ 13-year-old daughter and has had custody of her since she was 2-years-old.
"To me, she just never seemed like a stable person. She was nice overall but she just never had it together," says Melody Robinson describing Williams. "We let her watch the news story and then we allowed her to express her feelings and she just broke down."
Williams has 6 children, 4 boys, and 2 girls. Little Kendrick Lee was found dead, inside that west Harris County apartment Sunday, after he was beaten to death last November of 2020.
MORE: Bond set for mom, her boyfriend charged in murder of boy found in Harris Co. apartment
Williams is now charged with Injury To a Child by Omission. Her boyfriend Brian Coulter is charged with 8-year-old Kendrick’s murder.
"Whatever these charges are they need to stick because it’s not just the guy's fault. She failed them as a mother. She should have protected those children," says Robinson, who also recently received conservatorship of Williams' 17-year-old daughter. "The 17-year old-wanted to be with me and so the mom didn’t want her and told me just take her and didn’t want her back."
Linda, who did not want to include her last name is the biological grandmother of the 7-year-old boy. Williams and her children lived with Linda for about two years until 2016. Linda’s grandson, his 15 and 10-year-old brothers had been living in deplorable conditions, abandoned for a year living in the apartment with their brother’s skeletal remains until the 15-year-old finally called for help on Sunday.
"Kendrick had such a loving spirit," said Linda. "I was trying to forgive myself over this because I knew it was the right thing to let them go with their mother but now after all of this has happened I just don’t know what to say. I feel so bad about this whole thing."
RELATED: 'These kids fell through the cracks,' says non-profit Children at Risk
Even law enforcement officials were troubled by the conditions they found the children in.
"He was living in absolute fear," says HCSO Sgt. Dennis Wolford. "I do not believe the two young boys were ever allowed to leave that apartment. There is some evidence that perhaps they were locked in, possibly in different parts of the apartment. In my opinion, those children were younger than their chronological age."
"They were very sweet children, very nice, very well-spoken," the Sgt. added. "From the very beginning everything we asked them they were just straight forward but at the same time you had that thousand-yard stare, you know that blankness in the eyes."
"We saw soiled carpet, no furniture, no furniture at all. No bedding. No blankets that we could see and roaches and flies all over," said Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez.
RELATED: Mother, her boyfriend charged after boy's remains were found in west Harris Co. apartment
The 10-year-old’s jaw is injured and never received medical attention or pain medication and is so severe he has to have surgery, Sgt. Wolford explained.
"He does have an injury to the jaw that we believe was caused by the boyfriend Brian Coulter several weeks ago," he said.