Kentucky mother Lacey Spears was convicted of murdering her 5-year-old son with salt poisoning, and was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison on April 8. The crime was deemed ‘unfathomable in its cruelty’ by a judge.
Lacey Spears, 27, was found guilty in the death of her son, Garnett-Paul Spears, 5, for fatally poisoning him with salt through his hospital feeding tube. Lacey, a blogger who chronicled her son’s illness on a blog called “Garnett’s Journey,” was found guilty of second-degree murder last month, and reportedly suffers from a mental illness. On April 8, she was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison.
Lacey Spears Sentenced To Prison 20 Years To Life For Murdering 5-Year-Old Son
This is so sad. Prosecutors claimed that Lacey, who lived in Chestnut Ridge, New York with Garnett at the time of his death, poured a fatal amount of salt into Garnett’s feeding tube while she continued to blog about his journey, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Though Lacey’s lawyers blamed the hospital claiming that he was dehydrated, prosecutors claimed that Lacey craved the attention from social media.
“Using the child’s ‘illnesses’ to self aggrandize herself, her actions directly lead to her son’s tortured death,” the prosecutor said, adding that during Garnett’s five years he went through multiple unneeded surgeries and repeated hospitalizations. Lacey reportedly posted photos of Garnett’s last hours while on life support, which was evidence used to preosecute her.
Acting state Supreme Court Justice Robert Neary said the crime was “unfathomable in its cruelty” and that she brought her son “five years of torment and pain.” However, Lacey’s mental state was taken into account when evaluating her jail time.
Instead of sentencing her the maximum of 25 years to life, Lacey was sentenced 20 years to life because she reportedly suffers from Munchausen by proxy. This is a disorder in which parents or caregivers believe something is wrong with their child and secretly set out to harm them, while they enjoy the sympathy they receive.
The judge added he hopes Lacey’s case will encourage people to take note of such a serious illness.
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— Julianne Ishler