CLEARFIELD – Five Clearfield residents have been accused of providing “unfit” living conditions for several children.
Andrea J. Snyder, 36, Edward A. Snyder, 43, Kimberly J. Snyder, 38, and Eleanor J. Snyder, 65, have been charged by Officer Daniel Podliski of the Clearfield Borough police with five counts each of felony endangering the welfare of children and misdemeanor recklessly endangering another person.
Bryan Fulcher Hardy, 30, has also been charged with four counts each of felony endangering the welfare of children and misdemeanor recklessly endangering another person.
Andrea and Eleanor Snyder and Hardy waived their rights to preliminary hearings Wednesday during centralized court at the Clearfield County Jail. Their bail is set at $20,000 unsecured.
Both Edward and Kimberly Snyder had their preliminary hearings continued until Oct. 17.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, on Aug. 14, Podliski and Officer David Fye were dispatched for a report about a small boy wearing only a diaper and covered in dirt in the 500 block of Bigler Avenue.
Upon arrival, witnesses took officers to a blonde-haired toddler sitting at a table at the back of the store. He was neither able to communicate his name nor where he lived. However, Podliski recognized the boy and believed he belonged to Andrea Snyder due to previous incidents.
Podliski picked up the toddler and carried him because he wasn’t wearing any shoes. He had a soiled diaper and was taken back to his residence about one block away. There, Podliski spoke with another child who was playing in the alley and who said their mother was home.
He asked the child to go inside for her mother. Andrea Snyder came outside and began to accuse the child of not watching the toddler. Podliski asked her where she had been because it appeared she had just woken up. Andrea Snyder related she was in her kitchen making formula for her baby.
She said the boy possibly went out the front door but didn’t think he could have been gone more than five minutes. However, she was informed he’d walked to Pantry Petroleum, located along U.S. Route 322, officers received a complaint and responded, at which point he was returned to the residence.
Officers explained the toddler would have been gone at least 20 minutes, but Andrea Snyder disagreed with them. A Clearfield County Children & Youth Services worker was summoned to the scene and officers entered the residence.
Once inside, Podliski allegedly detected the odor of feces and rotten food. Mold was observed on the ceiling in the first room he entered, and electrical wiring was also hanging from the ceiling.
When Podliski entered the kitchen, he did observe an open container of formula but didn’t see a bottle in the immediate area.
He said food and “other substances” were stuck to the counter; on the table, there were numerous dishes and some had mold in them; mold was observed on both the table and floor; and there were garbage bags along the wall that had liquid leaking from them onto the floor.
In the living room, Podliski observed several children and an adult male, identified as Edward Snyder. He was asked where he was at when the boy got out and he replied “sleeping” and “they are not my kids.”
Podliski looked around the living and dining room areas, where he observed three mattresses. Andrea Snyder indicated the boys slept there; the carpet was reportedly stained black and dishes and food were on the floor in both rooms.
Podliski noted that the front door was locked and items blocked it, which would have prevented the boy from being able to open it.
Officers proceeded upstairs and there wasn’t a light in the stairwell. Podliski had to use his flashlight and saw a black substance covered the steps that appeared to have been there for some time. The steps, he said, were very slippery due to the excessive filth.
Officers went into the bedroom where Andrea Snyder related that she slept with the girls. They saw a 7-month-old baby sleeping on the bed. There were two beds inside the room, and its carpet was also stained black.
There was a bedroom across the hall, and Andrea Snyder said it belonged to her sister, Kimberly. When the door was opened, Podliski observed a child seated on the bed. From the doorway, Podliski observed garbage and clothes on the floor.
Podliski returned to his patrol unit for the department’s camera and photographed the interior of the residence. He summoned Code Enforcement Officer Larry Mack to the scene and he walked through the residence again with Podliski, who discovered additional issues.
On the window sill in the kitchen, there was a liquid substance and numerous dead flies lying on it. Also, there was reportedly a bare electrical wire near the refrigerator where there should have been a switch.
When Podliski and Mack exited, a female arrived and related the basement was full of sewage. They went back inside to the basement door, which is located to the right of Eleanor Snyder’s bedroom. Podliski said the lock was within reach of the children and a strong odor of feces was detected as soon as the door was opened.
Podliski shined his flashlight down the basement steps and observed suspected sewage, which he estimated was two feet deep. Mack ultimately deemed the residence as uninhabitable due to its conditions.