A judge in Wausau says he’ll decide by the end of the month whether to drop reckless homicide charges against a couple who prayed, instead of getting treatment for their diabetic daughter. At a hearing Monday, Marathon County Circuit Judge Vincent Howard said he was caught between a “rock and a hard place.” He said courts in two states threw out similar cases, while courts in two other states let them go to trial.
Lawyers for Dale and Leilani Neumann said their second-degree reckless homicide charges are “unconstitutionally vague” in their case. And they say the charges infringe on their freedom-of-religion. Prosecutors said the parents knew that medical care could help their 11-year-old daughter Madeline Neumann and a jury should have the right to decide whether it was criminal to let her die.
Madeline passed away on Easter Sunday from complications of her long-time diabetes. No matter what Howard decides, the judge expects it to be appealed to the State Supreme Court. That would delay a trial.