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Memphis Grandmother Arrested After Traveling With Children Inside of Pet Kennels

MEMPHIS, Tenn (localmemphis.com) - A Memphis grandmother is out on bail after being accused of driving her grandkids around town in dog kennels.

62-year-old Leimome Cheeks is facing child endangerment charges after cell phone video surfaced showing Cheeks opening the back hatch of her Ford Explorer and letting a child out of a dog kennel Saturday near Graceland.

Cheeks' next-door neighbor, Michelle Malone, is disturbed by this story and the cell video which has now gone viral.

Malone said, "No explanation whatsoever. Period. You can't even leave dogs in the car right now!"

Malone says she still can't believe her next-door neighbor is accused of putting her two grandkids, ages 7 and 8, inside dog crates in the back of her SUV. Malone says she and Leimome Cheeks have never spoken but Cheeks has briefly talked with Malone's husband and ten-year-old daughter. Malone says she's never seen a young boy there.

"They're the only two adults that I see. And the little girl. So, put that together she's the mother," said Malone.

According to the affidavit Cheeks drove the kids from Whitehaven to Collierville, then to Downtown Memphis in 95-degree heat.

For more than 40 minutes the kids rode in the kennels in the back of the SUV.

The kids told investigators they were put in the kennels because there was no room inside the vehicle.

"That's abuse that's abuse. No, she didn't care. Period," Malone said.

She says it makes her question the living conditions and what could be going on inside the home next door.

"Are they eating right? Are they being taken care of? Do they have bedrooms? Are they living in a room? Are they living in the closet? We have heard stories about that kids chained up in closets so what's going on the inside?"

Police say the kids are doing ok.

Cheeks was released Sunday on a $100-dollar bond.

Her next court appearance is set for July 9th.


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