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Parents Charged With Misdemeanors In Deaths Of Johnston County Teens

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SMITHFIELD, NC — Johnston County Sheriff's detectives have arrested Kent and Nissa Warren and are charging them with misdemeanor child abuse and storing a firearm in a manner accessible to a minor in connection with the deaths of their three children.

The sheriff's office obtained the arrest warrants Monday night, after meeting with the district attorney.

The warrant for arrest on misdemeanor child abuse stated that "the defendants unlawfully and willfully did, being the parent of Bradley Kyle Warren and Brandon Keith Warren, both children were less than 16 years of age, did create and allow to be created a substantial risk of physical injury upon those children by other than accidental means."

Detectives arrested the couple at their home around noon Tuesday.

"This has been a tragic incident due to the loss of three precious lives from our community," said Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell. "Common sense tells us that these adults were not the parents they deserved."

Bizzell did say that the parents have been cooperative with the authorities. He also says that he did not think there would be further charges against the parents, although the investigation remains open.

Since the charges are misdemeanors, the Warrens were fingerprinted and allowed to go home.

The bodies of the three teens were discovered July 26 by their mother. The deaths were ruled a murder-suicide last week.

Authorities say that Marnie Warren, 19, was shot four times in the head and her half-brother, 13-year-old Bradley Kyle Warren, was shot 11 times in the head, face, chest, arm and back. Marnie was found in the middle bedroom of the family's mobile home, and Kyle was found in the back bedroom.

Officials say Brandon Keith Warren, 14, shot his siblings then shot himself once in the mouth. Authorities found a .22 caliber semi-automatic rifle near his body, which was also found in the middle bedroom.

Officials have said two of the three bodies were found wearing no clothes, but they have not said which two.

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