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Records: Columbus foster parents accused of abusing, seriously injuring 2-year-old girl

The foster mother was arrested Wednesday and is facing additional charges related to animal cruelty. The foster father remains at large.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Police issued charges against two Columbus foster parents in connection to an incident that left a 2-year-old girl hospitalized in critical condition last month. 

On Feb. 4, the girl was taken to Nationwide Children’s Hospital in critical condition from a home on Glenwood Avenue in the Franklinton neighborhood. Police say the girl arrived in cardiac arrest and had visible injuries. 

Columbus police’s homicide unit was called to the hospital the following day due to the severity of the child’s injuries. 

Records from Franklin County Municipal Court state that the girl suffered abusive head trauma, bleeding in the brain, abrasions and contusions. 

In an update on March 30, police said the girl is expected to survive but will have long-term complications as a result of her injuries. 

Police issued arrest warrants for 30-year-old Angel Foster-Burks and 34-year-old Clayton Burks and charged them with endangering children, which is a third-degree felony. 

During the investigation, evidence suggested that Clayton caused the abuse while Angel was a “passive participant,” according to court records. 

Angel was arrested Wednesday. She is also charged with one count of cruelty to animals and four counts of prohibitions concerning companion animals, according to the Franklin County jail.

Clayton remains at large.

 During her court appearance Thursday, Foster-Burks was described by the prosecutor as a “passive participant.” Court records allege that Clayton Burks caused the child’s injuries. Foster-Burks is being held on a $100,000

Court records state that on Feb. 5, Columbus Humane visited the home on Glenwood Avenue and removed three dogs from the property. The animals were significantly underweight, had live fleas on them and were stained from fecal and urine. 

Police said it appeared that the dogs were not fed for weeks to months. 

Additionally, Columbus Humane and police removed three cats from inside the house. Records said that the cats were underweight, suffering from medical conditions and had fleas and ear mites. 

Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Columbus Police Homicide Unit at 614-645-4730 or Central Ohio Crime Stoppers at 614-461-TIPS (8477). 

The siblings of the child were placed in substitute care with family and/or foster parents. The Franklin County Children’s Services requested that the court order temporary custody of the children to the agency.

10 Investigates visited the home on Thursday and found trash and other debris around the property. The city deemed the building hazardous and vacant back on February 7.

A neighbor, who declined to give their name, said there were several children in the couple’s care.

10 Investigates also reached out to the city to Columbus Police to ask about the timing of the charges and to FCCS to find out about more about this particular case. We are still waiting for a response.

These charges come at time when foster parents are still in high demand. 10 Investigates has spent months reporting on issues in the foster care system.

You can watch our special report "Caught in the Cycle" here.

And earlier this year, we investigated how the challenges with foster care placements has led foster children to end sleeping – sometimes living – in county office buildings.

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