Las Vegas Sun

October 20, 2014

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Girl with untreated seizures removed from home

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — A 7-year-old girl was removed from her northern Colorado home and her parents were arrested because she could not walk or talk and was not being treated for seizures, police said.

The girl, who weighed just 37 pounds, is in foster care and progressing well, the Fort Collins Coloradoan reported Friday.

Her parents were arrested this week on felony charges of child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury. Each was released on $10,000 bond. No phone number could be found for them, and court records did not list any defense attorneys.

The girl was removed from the Fort Collins home in October, and police said they had been investigating the case since then. It was not immediately clear why the inquiry took so long.

The girl, now 8, has grown nearly 6 inches and weighs nearly 60 pounds after six months in foster care, authorities said. She is undergoing physical therapy and speech therapy.

Police said they received a tip about her untreated seizures. When officers and child-welfare workers went to the house on Oct. 28, the girl was on the floor unable to hold her head up, court documents said. She had a seizure while authorities were there, and she was taken to a hospital.

The parents told officers they had not taken taken her to a doctor recently because their car was broken and they did not want to ask for help, the documents said.

The father told officers that he believed the seizures were only "spells" or "episodes" because doctors initially could not pinpoint the cause, according to the records.

He told police he did not know whether the spells were caused by a medical or spiritual problem, and that the couple had run into obstacles when they tried to have their home blessed to get rid of bad spirits, documents said.

The 47-year-old mother is scheduled to appear in court Monday. The father, 44, has a court hearing scheduled Sept. 4.

The Associated Press typically does not identify abuse victims and is withholding the parents' names to avoid identifying the child.

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