- Associated Press - Friday, April 7, 2017

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - A man whose young children were confined to rooms covered with dog and human feces and trash while his dog was in a clean crate was sentenced Friday to at least 15 years in prison.

James Grenier, 26, was arrested in November on charges of endangering the welfare of a child, criminal restraint and reckless conduct following a request for Manchester police to check on the family’s welfare.

He pleaded guilty Friday, saying he loved his children but had never taken any type of parenting classes. He told police earlier that he didn’t want to clean up after the dog because he hated it and his wife was supposed to be cleaning up after it.

Grenier’s attorney argued that the prosecution’s recommended sentence of 15 to 30 years in prison was too high because the children were still cared for and didn’t suffer serious injuries. The defense requested a year behind bars.

Judge Gillian Abramson agreed with the prosecution, saying Grenier took better care of the dog then he did his children.

“You tortured them. There is no other way to describe this,” Abramson said.

Police found Grenier’s 4-year-old son in a harness with a childproof lock attached to a bed, which was covered with feces and urine. The floor of his room and a wall also had feces. Grenier’s 2-year-old daughter was unclothed and covered in feces inside her crib.

Police said Grenier and his wife, Samantha Grenier, both worked and did not appear to have any problems with drugs or alcohol.

The children were removed from the home and placed in protective custody.

Samantha Grenier faces related charges and is scheduled to appear in court next month.

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