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Iowa mom of 7 pleads not guilty in squalor case

Court records say 34-year-old Tiesha Martin and 33-year-old Jermaine Watson were charged Tuesday with child endangerment. Watson also is charged with four drug counts. (Dubuque County Jail)

A trial has been scheduled for a Dubuque woman accused of letting her seven children live amid what police say was garbage, rotted food and feces on their home's floor.

Court records say 34-year-old Tiesha Martin pleaded not guilty Tuesday to seven counts of child endangerment. Her trial is set to begin March 19.

Thirty-three-year-old Jermaine Watson, who police say is the father of the youngest child, also has pleaded not guilty. Court records don't yet show a trial date for him.

The records say police and a social worker checking on the children at Martin's residence Jan. 2 found the squalid conditions and say the children were sharing just one bedroom and bed.

Martin has said officers lied about the conditions.

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