Madeline Neumann was an 11-year-old daughter of Dale and Leilani Neumann. She was suffering from diabetic Ketoacidosis and later died because of being neglected by her parents (Jessica 6). It was an illness that could have been treated if the child had received medical care. The Neumanns did not take her to hospital despite being urged by their friends and relatives. The parents had neglected to seek medical aid based on religious background.
A Decision a Juror can Make
The Neumanns are supposed to be charged with ‘second-degree reckless homicide” for neglect. Apparently, it appeared that the wife was the one who totally refused to seek medical care. Her husband had suggested they seek medical care when the girl collapsed.
There are also Neumanns’ friends, Randall and Althea Wormgoor who persuaded the couple to seek medical help but they ignored. Evalani Gordon, Madeline’s grandmother, had also persuaded the couple to take Madeline to a doctor when she heard that she could not eat or walk but the couple ignored.
Dale and Leilani have other three small children and if they will not be charged, they will continue with this practice. There seem to be more cases that people do not know about because of the law failing to correct this issue.
The Neumanns are supposed to be charged with “second-degree reckless homicide” so as to pass the message that all parents are supposed to take their children to the hospital when they fall sick regardless of any beliefs they hold in religion. There will be no more cases of deaths if this decision is made. Faith healing should be discouraged and instead medical care should be promoted (Jessica 8).
Neumanns are not supposed to be charged with a light sentence because of the neglect. Although they felt that they suffered enough and their actions were sincere, Madeline died and she could have been saved by medical care. Passing on this message through heavy punishment is important so that children may be protected, safe and may not suffer again.
The Current State of the Case
In the year of 2008, the Neumanns were free with signature bonds of about $450,000. Both couples were given court-appointed attorneys. In august 19, a protection plan was put by the court to ensure that the other small children of the couple did not receive the same treatment of being neglected. In early 2009, both Dale and Leilani were charged with “second-degree reckless homicide”.
In October, 2009 both Neumanns were later sentenced a jail term of six months and 10 years probation (Jessica 8). The jail term was to be served a month in a year for a period of six years for them to continue taking care of their children that remained. There seemed to be no ground for appeal since the case was seen as an unusual.
The process of this trial was just, fair and legal because Madeline died while Neumanns watching, and she could have been saved if they had sought medical help. It was a homicide case and that’s why they could not be exempted on grounds of religion as was stipulated by law.
The law only allowed parents to use cases of child abuse as a defense in court on grounds of religion but not homicide hence the case was fair. The case was also inter-culturally sensitive to the religious point of view of the family because they believed their actions were justified.
Jessica, Vanegeren. “Prayer Death Case Headed to State Supreme Court, Experts Says.” The Capital Times March 19. 2010:23. Print.