Martha Crouch found in wall after eluding police for years

Martha Crouch appears inset against an image of a trailer home in Colorado

Martha Crouch appears inset in an undated booking photo against an image of a trailer in Walsenburg, Colorado. (San Juan County Sheriff’s Office; Screengrab via KRDO)

A woman on the run from law enforcement for years – who apparently convinced some of her family she had long been dead – was allegedly found hiding in a false wall in a Colorado home earlier this week.

In 2019, Martha Crouch, 58, was accused of felony child abuse and extreme cruelty to animals for allegedly boiling four puppies alive and forcing some of her 15 children to watch their slow deaths – after telling one child she would cook something special for their birthday. In another instance, she allegedly shot a child’s dog as punishment. And, in yet other instances, she allegedly beat one of her daughters with a spatula and beat another so badly that she miscarried.

Other allegations of child abuse against Crouch included claims that she chained one of her children to their bed and used a chain on one of her daughters to shame her for her weight.

On Dec. 8, 2021, Crouch took a plea deal on a lone count of attempted child abuse in the fourth degree, by way of a virtual hearing held in San Juan County, New Mexico, according to the Farmington Daily Times. Most of the charges against her were dropped, and she was placed on probation. Two days later, however, Crouch allegedly violated the terms of her probation, and a warrant was issued for her arrest.

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