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Warrants issued for starved Vancouver teen’s adoptive parents


by: Dan Tilkin, Jenny Young, KOIN 6 News Staff

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The adoptive parents of Karreon Franks, the 15-year-old from Vancouver who died from starvation and neglect, are being sought nationwide after arrest warrants were issued for them.

Felicia Louise Adams and her husband, Jesse Costillo Franks, are wanted for 2nd-degree murder and homicide by abuse, documents obtained by KOIN 6 News show. But the probable cause documents state it is unknown where the couple is at this time.

Prosecutors say they committed “deliberate cruelty” and “engaged in a pattern or practice of assault or torture” of Karreon, who was severely disabled.

Karreon was autistic, legally blind and unable to speak. A CPS worker visited the home just 6 days before he died.

‘Feel like they’re running’

Jesse Grover told KOIN 6 News he knew the family casually and chatted with Jesse Franks a lot outside their homes.

“Our driveways are right across from each other so, you know, we just see each other in passing and talk all the time.”

But no one in the neighborhood has seen or heard from the couple since the information surfaced about Karreon’s death, KOIN 6 News learned.

“Since all of this came out, they stopped by once and a lot of neighbors approach them and they just got back in their car and sped off,” Grover said. “And other than that, we haven’t seen them, haven’t seen their car or anything. So I feel like they’re definitely running.”

Grover said it shows no one really knows what’s going on in the house next door.

“I don’t understand how, like, any type of person could have done that,” he said. “You know, people who can’t speak for themselves need, need a voice, also.”

The case

Karreon Franks was 5-feet-3 and weighed 61 pounds when he died November 27, 2020, documents show. The CDC said 61 pounds is the average weight of a 9-year-old.

An undated photo of Karreon Franks, who was 15 when he starved to death in Vancouver. Murder warrants have been issued for his adoptive parents, May 28, 2021 (KOIN)

On that day, his mother Felicia Adams drove him to the hospital when she allegedly told doctors Karreon became unresponsive when she was bathing him. He was pronounced dead 14 minutes after arriving at the hospital.

Investigators said Felicia Adams went to the ilani casino later on the day Karreon died, and spent several hours gambling.

Documents obtained by KOIN 6 News show the autopsy done by the Clark County Medical Examiner showed abnormal bone and hair growth as well as abdominal lesions most likely caused by starvation. The ME also said Karreon had hardly any range of motion in his arms and legs, again likely because of starvation.

The search warrant affidavit also stated Karreon went to school before the pandemic. His teachers told a detective he was very motivated by food and would sometimes eat so much he would throw up.

His death was announced by the medical examiner in February, but at that time the manner and cause of death had not been determined.

No one in the neighborhood as seen or heard from the couple since the story of the case first broke.

2021 May 28