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Disabled mom, child held as slaves with snakes

Charges have been filed against four people in the case of a disabled Cleveland mother and her child who were held captive in Ashland for years.

According to our news partner WOIO-TV and the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the mother and child were forced to live in the basement of a home in Ashland, Ohio with pit bulls and python snakes.

According to the federal charges announced today, the suspects beat the pair and used threats of attacks by the dogs and snakes, as well as threats of death to keep them captive for two years.

In a news conference Tuesday, the U.S. Attorney described the details of the case as “modern-day slavery.” Authorities said the woman was forced to clean the house and perform yard work. The suspects allegedly also forced the woman to hit her on child while they recorded the violence on tape and used it as a threat to keep her quiet.

The suspects charged are identified as Jessica Hunt, 31, Jordie Callahan, 26, and Daniel J. Brown, 33, all from Ashland. A fourth person was not identified for unknown reasons.

The captivity came to an end in October of 2012 when the woman shoplifted a candy bar while shopping for the suspects. She told police the people at the house were mean and they launched an investigation. The woman and her child are now recovering. The suspects are due in federal court later Tuesday.

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