A Dallas judge sentenced a 31-year-old mother to 16 years in prison for not preventing the death of her daughter from diabetic complications, the Dallas Morning News reports.
Georgia Jones (pictured) pleaded guilty to felony injury to a child in the May 2008 death of Chastity Butler. Chastity was 9-years-old when she died on her mother’s bed next to a bag of candy and a half eaten cupcake.
“Chasity’s diabetes was not monitored properly causing her to be constantly sick and in bed rather than leading a normal life like other children her age,” Dallas police documents say.
Child Protective Services visited Georgia’s home days before the girl’s death and expressed concern that her diabetes was not managed properly. CPS officials also expressed concern that Georgia and her four siblings were not being fed properly. Though, during the visit, CPS officials described Chasity as “upbeat.”
The child was diagnosed with Type I diabetes in 2005 after she suffered a diabetic coma. “We rushed her to the hospital,” Marcus Butler, Georgia’s husband, said at the time. “We had to learn about how to deal with it and everything.” Jones and Butler were separated at the time of their daughter’s death.
Though police said Jones learned little from that experience and was even more negligent.
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A week after the diagnosis, she was scheduled for a Diabetes 101 class. Police say she did not show up.
Police say that Jones didn’t attend any follow-up medical treatment for five months.
By that time, CPS officials had already had their eye on the family. In 2001, the manager of a grocery store reported seeing 2-year-old Chasity and a younger sister unattended in a car in the parking lot. The following year, Jones’ aunt left the two children unattended in the parking lot of a day care, CPS officials say.
In 2005, Jones was sentenced to probation for felony credit card abuse.
During the years after Chasity’s diagnosis, CPS received reports that Jones wasn’t adequately managing her daughter’s disease. Each time, CPS investigators talked with doctors and others and did not find evidence of neglect.
But an endocrinologist at Children’s Medical Center Dallas told police that families are required to fax the hospital weekly logs of blood glucose levels. The readings are taken several times a day with a device that families take home with them.
“According to the clinic,” police documents say, “Georgia Jones was lax about sending in the BG readings and often went 2 and three months without sending any readings at all.”
When the readings were sent in, police say, Chasity’s levels were dangerously high. She had to be hospitalized at least five times during 2006 and 2007.
Police say that CPS investigations showed Chasity was often forced to take the readings and give insulin injections to herself or get help from her younger sister. The investigators said Jones did not adhere to diet rules, often feeding Chasity foods high in glucose.
The night before Chasity died, she experienced stomach pain, diarrhea and vomiting; she reportedly did not eat that night, either.
When Georgia finally checked her daughter’s glucose level, it was dangerously high. But the mother fed her sweets and noodles anyway, according to police documents. Jones did not take Chasity to the doctor.
Georgia faced up to 20 years in prison.