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MIDWEST CITY, Okla. — A metro father was arrested Monday after a startling discovery by a neighbor.

On July 30th, Kyler Keel asked his neighbor to watch his three children ranging in ages from 3- to 1-year-old, while he went to look for his wife. Once in the apartment his neighbor couldn’t find the kids.

According to court documents she finally found two of them behind a “mattress barricading the bedroom door,” and the youngest “in the master bedroom closet lying on the floor with the door shut.”

Keel told officers he did that so the kids wouldn’t get out and get hurt but when Midwest City police arrived they felt the kids just weren’t being taken care of properly.

Assistant Police Chief Sid Porter says, “The children were in diapers that were soiled. There wasn`t any food in the house. I believe one of the children appeared to be malnourished.”

Court documents say DHS found “knives, sharp tools, medications, and house hold cleaners within reach of their children,” and that the kids “had bruises all down their legs.”

Keel told officers he left the children locked in a bedroom so he could go look for his wife who police say has a “mental illness and doesn’t remember anything.”

We are not revealing her name but we found this post on Facebook right after the incident saying quote, “Today and yesterday was the worse days of my life.”

We stopped by the keel`s apartment, but no one was home.

Police are still looking for the children’s mother. In the meantime, the children remain in protective custody.

“They’re not being taken care of. A three-year-old, a two-year-old and a one-year-old cannot take care of themselves,” says Porter. “They count on a parent to take care of them.”

Kyler Keel is facing child abuse and enabling child abuse charges. His bail is set at $20,000 while Midwest City police keep investigating to possibly file additional charges.