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Md. parents allegedly locked up autistic twin sons

Autistic Men-Parents Charged

WASHINGTON (AP) - Police in Maryland say a couple kept their autistic, 22-year-old twin sons locked in a basement room at night for years with no furniture and only a tiny window for light.

Court records show John and Janice Land are free on bond after they were charged Friday with two counts each of vulnerable adult abuse and false imprisonment.

Charging documents say Montgomery County police went to the home to serve an unrelated search warrant Thursday and noticed a strong smell of urine.

John Land allegedly told police his sons were non-verbal and sometimes ran away. Authorities say he told investigators they began locking them in from 10 p.m. to 4:45 a.m. about six years ago.

No phone number is listed for the couple's home and no defense attorney is listed in online court records.

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siegellaw2 July 22 2014 at 12:43 PM

We are in desperate need of mental facilities in our country...Without them , this will continue to happen...mentally challenged people keep ending up in county jails or worse yet parents and families trying to cope with them at home without the skills necessary! Don't automatically place blame on these parents...they have a heavy burden that most of us have no idea how we'd handle until we wore their shoes!

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14 replies
Lorraine July 22 2014 at 11:44 AM

Sounds like this was hell for these parents. Now they can take a much needed vacation as the state will now care for the sons!

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9 replies
ameliabelladonna July 22 2014 at 12:59 PM

Watch that show "This is autism". Really awakens the reality of of the difficulty in raising children with this disability. My heart goes out to them all.

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2 replies
ameliabelladonna ameliabelladonna July 22 2014 at 1:00 PM

Except these two of course...

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daisy1cow ameliabelladonna July 22 2014 at 1:38 PM

NO, because that is not ALL autism, it is a spectrum so you have some that are violent, some non verbal, some the sweetest kids ever and like my daughter who has aspergers, works, lives on her own! THis is AUtism is horrible and not a fair representative of autism. I work in special education as well and have seen the spectrum and you can not lump them all together. My one student is the sweetest lovingest girl ever! Not a mean bone in her body. Ive also been hit and spit on by others, so please dont' say that show is fair

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1 reply
motolupo daisy1cow July 22 2014 at 4:46 PM

You work in special education. Get off your know it all attitude and try and live with it day to day 24/7. I have an 18 year old autistic son and it's not little kitty sweet. The show was honest and true. Some people are very mildly hit, some even able to blend into society. My son from about the age of 8-9 began getting aggressive and at puberty started needing meds because he was a danger to himself and others. I like that the show exposed the true side of autism others don't address. Your ignorant "I Know" is in fact an insult to those of us who live it every day.

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deesper July 22 2014 at 3:44 PM

I have an autistic daughter that is on the low end of the spectrum. She has no comprehension of safety so I had to lock her room each night and place a plexi glass framed window over her window that locked to keep her safe. She's stronger and taller than me. I am in my sixtites and couldn't chase her. The state gave me a hard time until the night she got out and was hit by a car. The lock is no longer an issue. My heart goes out to the parents of this family IT's not easy raising an autistic child. Mine is in her 20's

Flag Reply +16 rate up
3 replies
kevinra1 July 22 2014 at 3:30 PM

I don't see what the problem is unless the room they were kept in didn't have a toilet. It was only for 7 hours a night when they were supposed to be sleeping. I have an autistic daughter that wandered off a few times when she was little and I had to have the Police find her. I've had to bolt lock the doors to keep her from getting lost. Now that she is older, she knows more about her surroundings and can walk a few blocks and come back home on her own. I understand what these parents had to go thru. These twins must have a very severe case of autism.

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3 replies
Camp Bulldog July 22 2014 at 11:51 AM

I am extremely cautious when it comes to dealing with the mentally ill.

There are too many cases where they have committed violent crimes and the defense simply use their 'condition' as a defense. 5 to 10 years in mental institution and they are set free...

the victims ...directly or indirectly..are left to deal with the lost...lifetime of hurt...

as for these parents....not sure...but they more than likely had no other way...resources to handle the mental kids...

thank GOD they were smart enough not to continue to breed....to produce more problems...

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8 replies
Mary July 22 2014 at 12:27 PM

Maybe uneducated parents that that get dealt the hand of having a child or children with special needs should be flagged and be taught about the many resources out there for families and the children-these people are just cowardly child abusers who deserve all the punishment they get dealt

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10 replies
debbie.rice77 July 22 2014 at 3:49 PM

Don't punish the parents, help them. Until you have walked in their shoes, you shouldn't throw stones. This country needs to help people who struggle instead of throwing our money into foreign wars.

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3 replies
Shirley July 22 2014 at 12:00 PM

One of the men I worked with had a son that was non verbal.. He choked his step mom one time. I don't know what happened to him since then. They should put these two in a home some where and not lock them in a basement.

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4 replies
Irrenmann July 22 2014 at 1:20 PM

But once they are locked up in an institution instead, none of you calling the parents names will complain any more.

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2 replies
vallontina Irrenmann July 22 2014 at 3:16 PM

First you have to find an institution to take them as funding for hospitals and programs has been severely cut. Mental hospitals and group homes are closing.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
poll100 Irrenmann July 22 2014 at 3:51 PM

There are so few facilities for these people. The 19 year old Adam involved in Sandy Hook, his mom couldnt find a facility.

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