Monday, February 22, 2010

Teen locked up by custodial dad, stepmom weighed only 90 pounds (Phoenix, Arizona)

This 14-year-old girl was 5' 8" tall, and only 90 pounds? That's like somebody coming out of a concentration camp.

In addition to the horrible conditions we've heard of at the home of her custodial father SCOTT BASS, note some of the new details that are coming to light. Dad has a history of domestic violence (what a big surprise that is). And that the girl hasn't seen her actual mother since she was 8.

I can find out little about this, except on another blog (True Crime Report), a respondent claiming to be the mother says she lives in California and has been searching for her children for years.

Teen who was locked up weighed only 90 pounds
by Jessica Testa - Feb. 22, 2010 02:04 PM
The Arizona Republic

As the parents of a 14-year-old Phoenix girl pleaded not guilty to charges of child abuse and kidnapping Monday morning, new details have emerged surrounding the suspected imprisonment of their daughter.

The couple was indicted by a grand jury last week on three counts of child abuse and one count of kidnapping. They pleaded not guilty to all the charges in the Maricopa County Superior Court arraignment Monday.

According to the police report filed following the arrest of Scott Bass, 33, and Andrea Bass, 31, the teenage girl, who was 5-foot-8-inches tall, was only 90 pounds when she left the home.

The Basses are suspected of keeping their daughter locked in a bathroom for two months with no running water, feeding her canned food once every few days, forcing her to exercise and beating her when she became too exhausted.

In his report, Phoenix police Officer Vincent Lavia reported that the 14-year-old girl would hysterically cry whenever she thought of returning to her parents' house. According to the officer, her living conditions "were barely suitable for an animal."

Police interviews with the 14-year-old girl, the parents and other children in the Bass home - including an 11-year-old girl - revealed a history of family tension.

The 14-year-old said her father once spent a night in jail for domestic violence against Andrea, according to the report. The girl said she hasn't seen her biological mother, Treasure Adams, since she was 8 years old.

She said Andrea Bass' appearance in her life five years ago felt like her "world turning upside down." She told police Andrea Bass, who gave piano lessons and massages from home and taught toddler classes as a volunteer at the YMCA, turned her father against her.

Scott Bass said his daughter was only being disciplined for bad behavior - behavior sparked by the family's move from their apartment in Glendale to a house in Phoenix, near 27th Avenue and Durango Street. He said he gave his daughter a bucket to urinate and defecate in because he was fed up with attempting to talk to her. He said living in seclusion was her choice.

Andrea Bass, Scott's wife of five years, said Scott Bass tried to kill himself after Child Protective Services took his five children away prior to his arrest. She told police that she alone had been involved in at least 15 prior reports with CPS.

At the time of Scott and Andrea's arrest, police did not believe the other children in the house - ages 3, 4, 11 and 12 - had been abused. The 14-year-old told police the other children were emotionally abusive toward her.

When the girl's younger sister, 11, was asked if she cared about her older sister, the girl told police, "In certain situations, no." The 11-year-old said she didn't know what happened behind her sister's locked bathroom door. She said she never saw her older sister exercise with her parents, but she knew she did because the Basses were, according to the police document, a "healthy family."

The 11-year-old, however, admitted that she has lied to social workers before. She said she knew what it felt like to be locked in the bathroom.

Scott and Andrea Bass will have their next court date on April 6.