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We all know that child abuse occurs way more frequently than we think, but to find out that abuse was allegedly conducted by two people whose employment involves ensuring the wellbeing of others? Well, that’s pretty sick.

Local NBC news affiliate WPTV reports that a Monroe, North Carolina couple are each being held on over $500,000 bond after the boy they were fostering was found by a sheriff's deputy. The deputy was was responding to a call about an animal on the 30-acre property when he found a boy handcuffed to the home’s front porch by his ankle. As if that weren’t awful enough, the 11-year-old had a dead chicken tied around his neck.

Even more incredible than the abuse itself are the professions of the alleged perpetrators of these crimes: Dorian Lee Harper is an emergency room nurse, and his partner, Wanda Sue Larson, is a supervisor for the Union County Department of Social Services. The couple have four other adopted children, who the Sheriff's office reports are now in custody of an outside agency, along with the handcuffed boy.

The small community of Monroe is stunned and remain in disbelief at how two seemingly normal people could have conducted this horrific act. Sheriff Eddie Cathey told CNN regarding Larson, "My agents have worked with her often. She handles a lot of the social services cases out here throughout all of Union County. We're shocked." He added that the couple’s adopted children, who range in age from 8 to 14, don’t appear to be abused, but all will undergo medical evaluations.

Source: WPTV, CNN