ARIZONA NEWS

Mesa couple accused of child abuse; police say home had no food or running water

Jul 20, 2022, 4:00 PM

Brandon Edwards and Katrina Johnson (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photos)...

Brandon Edwards and Katrina Johnson (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photos)

(Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photos)

MESA (AP) — A Mesa couple has been accused of child abuse after their three children were found to be living in a filthy home without food or running water, according to authorities.

Mesa police said Brandon Edwards and Katrina Johnson were taken into custody Monday.

It was unclear Wednesday if either has a lawyer yet.

Maricopa County Sheriff’s deputies began investigating in February after a caller told police that three young girls were going to neighbors’ houses asking for food and water.

Court documents show deputies went inside the couple’s home and found little food, no running water and a toilet filled with feces, according to court documents.

Investigators said Johnson told them that she fed her kids, enrolled them in online school and took them to another family member’s house to bathe because city fines resulted in her home’s water being water off.

Edwards said Johnson homeschooled the kids, however.

Court records show Johnson told investigators she received money from her mother but would use it to buy drugs instead of food for the children.

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Mesa couple accused of child abuse; police say home had no food or running water