Teen Left Handcuffed & Starving in Basement Rescued Thanks to Brave Neighbor

Twisted 52

handcuffedCalling in your neighbors for suspected child abuse can be scary, but here's proof that it's worth it. A frail and malnourished teenage boy was rescued this week after months of being handcuffed to a steel pole in his family's basement. Missouri cops say the 17-year-old had been living like that since September, subsisting only on meager meals of instant oatmeal, ramen noodles, and bologna sandwiches.

When they rescued the boy, cops say he was cowering in the basement, pleading, "I didn't do anything, I didn't do anything, I didn't do anything." The details get worse from there. But now the unidentified boy is safe and sound with a foster family that's already helped put meat on his bones. And it's all thanks to one woman: a neighbor who isn't afraid to come out and talk about the role she played in getting this child some help.

We don't usually get the names of these heroes. Calling in a neighbor, as mentioned before, carries with it a risk of ostracizing yourself from the neighborhood. What if you're wrong? Worse, what if you're right? You're the one who got the neighbors in trouble.

And yet, Crystal Anderson was loud and proud when she told the media that she knew she had to call authorities after seeing the boy handcuffed to a door and then hearing a scuffle next door.

Seeking her 15 minutes of fame? Maybe. But why shouldn't she? Anderson saved this boy from abuse, maybe even saved his life. She's already gotten calls from members of his family thanking her.

By coming out, Anderson sends a message to the world: you shouldn't be ashamed of being "nosy" or butting in, not when you're saving a child's life.

If only more people were like Anderson, maybe more of these child abuse cases would have happy endings.

As it is, this boy is now getting help, and in just a few days already put some meat on his emaciated frame. A 2-year-old was also removed from the home, preventing who knows what from happening to him.

What do you think of this woman's bravery and decision to speak openly about what she did for this boy?


Image via cdogstar/Flickr

child abuse, crime


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nicol... nicolemead91

thank god for nosey neighbors! poor kid..i couldnt imagine being handcuffed to something for so long!

Mom2f... Mom2fourlove

Let her have her 15 minutes she deserves it!

LostS... LostSoul88

She derves to have her time of fame. She save a childs life and probab;y saved the life of that 2 year old. 

abra819 abra819

You never give details.

Mamab... MamabearC

I'm glad she made the choice to report this so that these kids could be rescued. Outing myself to the public isn't something I would do but I think we all have times in our life when we need to be recognized for our actions or feel validated...so I'm not going to judge her for it and I wish her and those kids the very best.

nonmember avatar dee

Why would you bring up "15 minutes of fame"? Maybe she did it because she is a good person - god knows if no one had said anything it would have been the opposite reaction.

Sara Haxton

Reminds me of the song "Stone Angel" it talks about what happens when people stay silent.

kymom23 kymom23

You mean Concrete Angel by Martina McBride? But yeah, I agree. I'm so glad that she was "nosy" and got that poor boy some help!! 

lilbu... lilbunnyhops

the poor child.  i am very happy to hear he has been rescued.  it is bewildering what some people to do children.  horrifying.

Shirley Steiniger

Thank God she cared enough to speak up! Where were the other family members during this time? The entire family should be brought up on charges, anyone who had knowledge of this is guilty of abuse or at least knowledge after the fact. And they should suffer the consequences! The neighbor needs to get the key to the city!

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