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Literally: The Worst Parents in America

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Brett Rosner

By Brett Rosner on July 2, 2013

James and Roxanne Murphy are literally the worst parents you will ever read about. They stand accused of doing pretty much every single bad thing you can do to a child, short of killing them.

The Dropkick Murphys have four children, ranging in ages from nine to 15. Police were called to their Pennsylvania house in December when one of the children called 911 to report all of his siblings were home alone and drinking alcohol. The 13-year-old told officers his parents made them either drink alcohol or take his mother’s prescription pills to make them go to sleep. We’ll call that the Murphys’ Choice.

The information the children provided to officers is almost unbelievable. Since every paragraph reads like Bad Parent fiction, here are just some of the horrible horrible things the parents are accused of doing:

• Providing alcohol to all four children (legally drunk 9-year-old!)
• Physically abusing the kids (one was thrown into a wall)
• Having firearms within reach (right there on the floor)
• Threatening to kill the youngest child
• Taking pics of one kid with an “adult toy” in his pants
• Keeping one from going to school … ever
• Locking one of the children in a room with a bucket
• Having child porn on the computer
• Making one kid take care of the family’s FIFTY SNAKES
• Living in a filthy home with lizards, pigs and other animals


One of the most troubling details of the story was that the family allegedly moved every time one of the children tried to tell anyone about the abuse, moving from West Virginia to Maryland and eventually settling in York, PA.

According to The Sentinel, the children were taken into protective custody and given medical treatment.

The children were taken into protective custody by York County Children and Youth Services and transported to a hospital for further evaluation due to their levels of intoxication. The 9-year-old had a blood-alcohol level of 0.087 percent and her older siblings tested between 0.049 and 0.073 percent, police said.

So what did Roxanne say when she was confronted with the allegations? She said all of her children were liars and requested an attorney.

James Murphy was charged with 27 criminal counts, including endangering the welfare of a child, child pornography, furnishing alcohol to minors, aggravated assault, unlawful restraint of a minor and simple assault.

Roxanne was charged with 13 counts, including endangering the welfare of a child, attempted simple assault and unlawful restraint of a minor.  

Bail for each has been set at $250,000.

The Murphys are expected before a judge July 26 to face their charges.

[h/t @parva_x]

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