Same-sex couple jailed for six years over death of malnourished daughter
Two women have been sentenced to 6 years in jail over the death of their two-year-old malnourished child.
The High Court in Glasgow, Scotland, sentenced Margaret Wade, 38, and Marie Sweeney, 37, to 6 years and 4 months in prison yesterday (18 January).
The couple admitted they wilfully ill-treated and neglected their daughter Lauren. They also pleaded guilty to similar charges relating to two older children.
They admitted neglecting their daughter
Toddler Lauren Wade was extremely thin when she entered Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Yorkhill in March 2015. Doctors also found her infested with head lice.
Despite the efforts to save her life, Lauren died hours later.
Prosecutor Bill McVicar told the court Wade and Sweeney had been a couple for more than 15 years. They both regarded themselves as Lauren’s parents.
Lauren’s birth mother, Wade, and her partner Sweeney admitted failing to provide adequate nutrition and fluids. They also admitted failing to bathe the girl and maintain her personal hygiene.
Authorities who visited the family’s home found decomposing food, flies, and insects. They also said the kitchen was inaccessible due to the amount of bin bags.
Sky News reports the judge said: ‘You have pled guilty to three very serious charges. These charges relate to three separate children but as would be expected, these charges overlap and the charges seem to refer to the same basic ill-treatment and neglect which exposed each of the children to the likelihood of suffering and injury to health and led ultimately to the death of your daughter.’
Brian McConnachie QC, defending Wade, said she had mental health problems that affected her ability to care for the children.