On Wednesday, Bullock shared more details about the ongoing investigation, revealing that Cheatham apparently wanted to force the kids to wear specially made prison uniforms which she ordered while employed by the Missouri Department of Corrections.
The children, between the ages of 6 and 12, were taken into protective custody.
St. Francois County Sheriff Daniel Bullock says officers found the children Tuesday in a home in Farmington, about 60 miles south of St. Louis.
According to the hotline report, the children were being confined in rooms secured with plywood and screws.
The children's mother, Laura Cheatham along with Daryl Head are charged with five counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child and three counts of 2nd-degree Kidnapping.
5 On Your Side discovered Cheatham and Head started a nonprofit past year created to help children with Reactive Attachment Disorder. The jail attire was custom-made by the Prison Industries Clothing Division. Investigators for the Farmington Police Department took custody of the uniforms from the Farmington Correctional Center.
Image shows the child's prison uniforms confiscated by police
Investigators with Farmington Correctional Center are assisting with interviews concerning the placement of the order and the uniforms' manufacturing, as well as any other potential evidence. We've seen a lot of different things over the years. "This is the kind of thing that happens somewhere else, not here".
KMOV-TV says the children appear to be in relatively good health.
"Once investigators gained entry into the home, they discovered a 38-year-old female removing screws from plywood covering the entrance to small rooms and children coming out from behind the plywood", the sheriff said in a news release. "The children looked healthy".
Neighbors have since told police that they regularly saw the children doing manual labor, including sawing plywood they believe was later used to keep them captive.
"You do see it a lot in children from foster care and adopted children because of that early life experience, you know, neglect, multiple caregivers", she said.