DALLAS (AP) — A 31-year-old man has been charged with child endangerment after police found his four young children alone in his squalid Dallas apartment.

Police say Robert Preston’s children were ages 5 or younger and appeared to have had “limited contact” with the outside world. Investigators say the boys seemed to communicate using “gesturing and screams.”

An affidavit says the apartment was unfurnished, strewn with liquor bottled and reeking of feces. Police say they found the oven on and a malnourished puppy in a closet.

Preston is being held in Dallas County Jail. Court records show he’s also charged with a probation violation, for which no bond is allowed.

Preston’s court-appointed lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Associated Press.

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