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Munchausen by Proxy

  • Date Submitted: 08/18/2013 10:31 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 38.7 
  • Words: 1308
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February 28, 2006 two women, Darcy Wall and Susan Owen walked into the Harris County Courthouse to report their friend Laurie Williamson for child abuse. Sgt. Mike Johnson of the Domestic Violence Unit listened to the two women’s story. Darcy and Susan believed that Laurie had Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy (MSBP) and that she was pretending to her children were sicker than they really were. It sounded like a problem for CPS to handle but they had already reported the matter to CPS with no avail. After researching MSBP on the internet, Johnson determined that it was indeed a form of child abuse that could result in permanent injury or death. The search turned up a news article about MSBP that recently been prosecuted, Johnson decided to contact the prosecutor who handled the case. The investigation began by issuing grand jury subpoenas to every health care entity that had seen the children. Johnson started taking statements and collecting letters from friends, family members. The information collected was disturbing. Laurie Williamson had three children: Tom, age 11, Roger, 9, and Chrissy, 6. They wore diapers because none of them were toilet trained, and Tom and Chrissy were confined to wheelchairs and had “g-buttons”(gastronomy tubes) through which liquid formula could be pumped directly into their stomachs. The mother told everyone that the children had mitochondrial disease and a regressive neurological disorder, along with other ailments, and were not expected to live beyond their teens. The children were kept inside and rarely allowed to play outside. All three children were on numerous prescriptions meant to control different problems. Chrissy’s medicine had to be given through her g-button as she was never allowed to eat or drink anything by mouth. Her mother said she had a swallowing disorder and would choke. Sgt. Johnson obtained a pair of letters from the children’s pediatrician. The first listed all the problems with which the three children had...

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