Picture of Clifford Dotson taken shortly after his birth.
Authorities in Roane County are investigating the death of a toddler from starvation.
According to Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton, a mother brought her 2-year-old son to Ft. Loudon Medical Center on May 3 at 4:30 a.m.
The child, Clifford Dotson, died, and law enforcement was called in to investigate his death.
An autopsy showed that the boy died from malnutrition. He weighed only 12 pounds when he died. He was 7 pounds at birth.
The sheriff said the parents were interviewed on Tuesday. He said the child had been neglected, that he spent most of his life in a car seat, and had only been fed once a day.
"You could tell just by looking that the child had been under nourished. It was one of the worst, most graphic pictures of a child that I have ever seen in more than 30 years," said Sheriff Jack Stockton.
Clifford's parents, Matthew and Amanda Ann Dotson, live on rural Lerchen Road in East Roane County.
His neighbor, Astrid Gunter, said she had never heard a peep out of the family. She said everyone on the street is very private.
She was shocked when she learned the news.
"I don't understand how anybody can do that to a kid. I cannot believe that it happened, not just here but anywhere in this county. There is so many places they can go to get food," said Gunter.
Sheriff Stockton said they have a very strong case against the parents, and the evidence will be presented to a grand jury in June.
The couple have another child, 6, who is now in D.C.S. custody.
Charges have not yet been filed in the child's death.