(Mankato, MN) – A Mapleton couple is facing criminal charges after investigators found five children living in their home under squalid conditions.

Thirty-four-year-old Jessica Lyn Kleinow and 35-year-old Carlos James Salinas Jr. are each charged with two counts of gross misdemeanor child endangerment.

According to the criminal complaint, Blue Earth County officials went to the couple’s Mapleton home on March 5th to investigate a report of child neglect.  Five children ranging in age from 14 months to 15-year-old resided in the home, according to court documents.

Investigators described filthy conditions in the home:  large bags of garbage were stacked in the kitchen and living area and dried dog urine and feces were found in every room, including bedrooms.   Dried and rotting food cluttered the table and countertops, and raw meat sat rotting on the counter with fluids seeping from the packaging.  The dirty clothes pile leading to the lower level was so large, the stairway was inaccessible, according to the complaint.

A glass pipe, marijuana in an open pill bottle, a condom, and an empty narcotics prescription bottle were found in area accessible to the children, according to the complaint.  An earlier report from Social Services had indicated that the 14-month-old had been playing with a condom and was about to put the wrapper in her mouth when the mandated reporter stopped her.

Salinas told investigators he had mopped and cleaned the whole house one or two days prior to the visit.  He claimed the house “was not like this” when Kleinow arrived home from work.  He admitted to smoking marijuana but said he never smoked in front of the children.  Salinas told investigators he couldn’t keep up with the children.

The children were removed from the home under a 72-hour police health-and-welfare policy according to the complaint.

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