The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

February 7, 2013

Second suspect pleads guilty in child abandonment case

Herald-Banner Staff

GREENVILLE — A second local resident has pleaded guilty to being part of a group which allegedly exposed three small children to a variety of illegal drugs last year.

Justin Lashun Foster, 22, entered guilty pleas during a Wednesday hearing in the 354th District Court to three counts of abandoning/endangering a child. Under a plea bargain arrangement, Foster was sentenced to 16 months in a state jail and was fined $500 on each charge.

Melinda Marshell Foster, 43, of Greenville entered guilty pleas to the same charges January 31 and received the same sentences.

Both defendants originally received three indictments for the more serious charge of endangering a child by an act.

The defendants were among six individuals alleged in the indictments to have exposed children of less than 14 years of age to cocaine, marijuana, PCP, amphetamines, opiates and more, and to have smoked and/or sold the substances from a residence in the 2200 block of St. John Street on or about May 4, 2012.

At least two small children, a 2 year-old male and an 8 month-old male, were removed from the home by the Texas Department of Family Protective Services (Child Protective Services).

The endangering a child by an act indictments carry a maximum sentence upon conviction of from two to 20 years in prison and an optional fine of up to $10,000.