Apple Springs couple avoids jailtime for locking kids in house while going to bar

Crystal Fry and Mark Skinner (Source: Trinity Police)
Crystal Fry and Mark Skinner (Source: Trinity Police)

GROVETON, TX (KTRE) - A Trinity County judge has sentenced a married couple to deferred adjudication after they pleaded guilty to charges in connection to leaving the woman's children at home while they went to the bar in 2014.

Mark Skinner and Crystal Leanna Fry pleaded guilty to abandoning a child at a previous date. Judge Kaycee Jones sentenced them to five years of deferred adjudication on Thursday.

Deferred adjudication puts the defendant on probation terms. If the defendant completes the terms successfully, they can avoid a conviction.

According to a previous report, deputies discovered the couple at Steel Horse Saloon, located on State Highway 94 near the Angelina County line.

Knowing they had warrants for their arrest on a theft charge, deputies went there to arrest them on Aug. 16, 2014.

It was not until they booked out of jail the next day that authorities learned about a new allegation against the couple. Someone told them that as Fry was about to be arrested, she whispered to someone in the bar to take her keys and meet her mother at the house, because her children were there.

The couple had left the children, a one-year-old and a three-year-old, at the house for more than an hour. He said witnesses said the couple used a padlock to keep them inside and from getting out.

Deputies arrested both again within a matter of days.

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