Spartanburg County couple accused of keeping toddlers within reach of loaded guns in filthy house

Derrick and Catherine Lister

SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- A Spartanburg County couple has been arrested after sheriff’s deputies and a social worker found children living in dirty conditions with loaded guns.

Catherine Michelle Lister, 26, of Moore was arrested Sunday and charged with two counts of child neglect.

Her husband, Derrick Shun Lister, 28, was arrested last week.

A sheriff’s report says an officer and a Department of Social Services worker went to the home Oct. 15. The deputy reported dirty clothes and rotting garbage in the home.

There was a sign at the home that said, “I don’t dial 911” and “No trespassing, violators will be shot, survivors will be shot again.”

The officer found a 12-gauge shotgun and .22-caliber rifle, loaded and with the safety mechanisms off within reach of the children, ages 2 and 4. The deputy confiscated the guns.

The report said there were several surveillance cameras mounted in different parts of the home. A bay window in the bedroom had frosted glass with what appeared to be view ports that provided a “field of fire covering the entire approach from the street, leading the deputy to believe Lister had created a “sniper’s nest” in the interior of the master bedroom.

There were also several framed certificates indicating that Derrick Lister had served in the U.S. Army as a military police officer.

The children are in protective custody.

It was not clear if the couple has legal representation.