A mum and her lover are facing charges for allegedly imprisoning two children for several years.
Two brothers, seven and nine, smashed through a window and tried to run away after reportedly being held hostage in a Milwaukee, US home.
Neighbours who witnessed the great escape reported the two boys were naked and covered in blood and couldn't run properly, claiming the pair moved like cavemen.
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Now the boys' mum, Katie Koch, 34, faces four felony counts and two misdemeanours of child neglect and false imprisonment, while her partner Joel Manke, 38, is facing four felony counts, according to local news outlet CBS 58.
The channel reported a neighbour first saw the children peering through a shattered window on Thursday (July 13) before clambering onto an air conditioning unit outside.
They then jumped into the garden and walked down the street in the buff.
Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney Mallory Davis added a child witness said the boys "were acting like cavemen, like they had never seen the sun before."
Christine Eder, who lives across the street from the home, agreed, adding: "They had never been outside before. If they have been, it's been a very long time."
Speaking to the station, she added: "They were just walking different. Their hair looked like it had never been brushed, never been cut. They didn't know the outside existed."
Eder said her husband called 911 after she spotted the youngsters while she kept her eye on the boys.
The pair were taken into private custody, where the had been kept in such poor conditions their heads had to be shaved as their hair was so matted with faeces, according to police.
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Davis added the children were "unable to function" thanks to the treatment they allegedly received.
"These children have been horribly damaged from their mother's actions," she said.
"They are completely uneducated. They are not potty trained, even at their ages. They are, essentially at this point, unable to function in society," Davis told the channel.
Appearing in Milwaukee County intake court on Monday (July 17), the assistant district attorney said the boys had been kept in their bedrooms for much of their lives, with the windows boarded up and their door locked from the outside.
Responding officers said the home was so messy they couldn't see the floor and added rubbish was piled high throughout the kitchen and living room, describing the property as "a terrible hoarding situation".
One officer said the home smelt of faeces and urine, while poo was smeared on the children's walls.
Koch told police the children had broken a window before running away.
Joel Manke told investigators he had lived in the home since 2007. Koch told investigators she and her children moved in about four years ago.
In a police interview, Manke said he knew the conditions the kids were subjected to were cruel but claimed he had to "pick his battles" with Koch.
He also said the kids' mum hadn't taken the children to see a doctor since moving in, and the boys allegedly hadn't even attended school in that time.
Koch told police she homeschooled her two children, but confessed "the home is not habitable," and "her boys deserve better".
The commissioner has set a $30,000 (£23,225.10) cash bail for Koch. Her public defender said she has no money.
Manke's cash bail was set at $6,500 (£5032.10).
If the pair are convicted on all charges, they each face fines of up to $120,000 (£92900) and more 43 years behind bars, while Koch would be subjected to a further $20,000 (£15483) fine and 18 months in prison.
Preliminary hearings are set for July 26.
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