NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A judge on Tuesday reduced the bond of an Antioch woman accused of allowing her children to live in filth, alongside dead and malnourished animals.
Dorothy Kifer, 37, was charged with multiple counts of aggravated child neglect and animal cruelty in July after police responded to a neighbor's complaint that Kifer's horses were running wild.
Inside her Maxwell Road home, officers found no furniture, no air conditioning and no running water.
Sewage and wastewater was found on the ground and her four children, who appeared to be covered in mud and animal feces, were malnourished and dehydrated.
Animal Control personnel removed 15 underweight dogs from the property and recovered three dead dogs inside the residence, one of which had started to decompose.
On Tuesday, Judge Leon Ruben reduced Kifer's bond from $420,000 to $210,000 after her husband, a member of the Tennessee National Guard, testified he could not afford to bond her out.
Jesse Kifer told the court that he didn't know about the living conditions at the family's home because he had been on duty in Iraq since February.
He returned home the same day his wife was arrested.
If she makes bond, Dorothy Kifer is forbidden from having contact with her children until the case is resolved.
The children, all of whom are under the age of six, are in foster care, and most of the dogs have been adopted from Metro Animal Control.
A grand jury will now take up the case against Kifer.
441 Murfreesboro Road Nashville, TN 37210