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Vegan couple sentenced to life over baby's death


veganmomma
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ATLANTA - A vegan couple were sentenced Wednesday to life in prison for the death of their malnourished 6-week-old baby boy, who was fed a diet largely consisting of soy milk and apple juice.

 

Superior Court Judge L.A. McConnell imposed the mandatory sentences on Jade Sanders, 27, and Lamont Thomas, 31. Their son, Crown Shakur, weighed just 3 1/2 pounds when he died of starvation on April 25, 2004.

 

The couple were found guilty May 2 of malice murder, felony murder, involuntary manslaughter and cruelty to children. A jury deliberated about seven hours before returning the guilty verdicts.

 

Defense lawyers said the first-time parents did the best they could while adhering to the lifestyle of vegans, who typically use no animal products. They said Sanders and Thomas did not realize the baby, who was born at home, was in danger until minutes before he died.

 

But prosecutors said the couple intentionally neglected their child and refused to take him to the doctor even as the baby’s body wasted away.

 

“No matter how many times they want to say, ‘We’re vegans, we’re vegetarians,’ that’s not the issue in this case,” said prosecutor Chuck Boring. “The child died because he was not fed. Period.”

 

Although the life sentences were automatic, Sanders and Thomas begged for leniency before sentencing. Sanders urged the judge to look past his “perception” of the couple.

 

“I loved my son — and I did not starve him,” she said.

 

When the judge told the defendants they could ask for a new trial, Thomas hung his head low.

 

“I’m dying every day in there,” he said, “and that could take three years.”

 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18574603/

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omg! what's going on with this people? are they really vegan, or merely people who did something stupid and to avoid having to pay all the sentence some guy paid them to lie about being vegan to make their situation less worse? omg! i'm so tired of these people all the time...

 

vegan this, vegan that.. anyways.. can't a vegan be unhealthy too? the % of omnivores dying is waaay bigger than that.. and they don't bs everybody about it..

 

i'm tired..

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Um, BREASTMILK????

 

Yeah, they deserve their sentence. The ONLY natural food source for an infant is human breastmilk (which is not to say they won't survive on formula, obviously. I'm talking about what nature intended),. Anyway, vegan or not, these people either have the combined IQ of a peanut, or did it intentionally.

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Good point Crashnburn. The infant was 6 weeks old - too young to have eggs, dairy or meat. All infants are meant to be vegan as they're meant to subsist on human milk (which is not "dairy"). I caught a glance at a headline in a Peolple magazine at an airport today "Did This Baby Die From A VEGAN DIET?" What a bunch of irresponsible BS reporting, if you can call it that. If the parents had been Kosher would we see a headline "Did this baby die from a Kosher Diet? What a sad story that only leads to more misinformation regarding vegans.

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Related New York Times Op-Ed piece:

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/21/opinion/21planck.html?em&ex=1179892800&en=c13b188909ccc603&ei=5087%0A

 

I'm surprised the Times would publish an article with such a poorly supported argument. Citing "indigenous cultures" and "studies" does not make an ironclad defence, or even a good one.

People love to hear that the crap they're eating is healthy.

Something ticked the author (I don't believe she ever was vegan, all Mercola and Weston Price people say they have been vegan) off veganism. We all know it isn't science, so it must be something else. I think there are as many excuses as there are people.

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I wish the writer stated the mortality rates of these indigenous people. I also like how she said at the end that babies are built from fish oil.

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  • 2 months later...

I've heard a bit about this case...my parents live near Atlanta...we just had a baby boy in November and my mom was real concerned about us raising our children vegan...when she explained the case my initial reaction was "what the hell does this have to do with being vegan?!" Babies need breast milk...wtf?! I've also heard that they did a home delivery and the first time the child saw a doctor was right before it died! I can't believe it's even tied to veganism...it has more to do with incompetent parenting...I believe they were feeding the baby soy milk, like Silk or something, not even soy formula...that's the impression I got..and it says pretty clearly that its not meant for babies! A few other people have brought up the case, mostly family members, but once you explain the real issues, I think most people get it...I guess "Vegan diet kills Baby" makes for a better story than "Incompetent Parents Kill Baby"...

I do however feel sorry for the parents...not too bright...but damn, losing a kid is terrible...really, really horrible...I wonder if they were all there mentally...there could be ALOT more to this story...

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Obviously the child was on a starvation diet, not a vegan diet. There is no report that the couple knew how to raise a baby, or any mention of why the child wasn't breast fed. I disagree that the couple "deserves" a life sentence. I have no doubt that were Jade Sanders and Lamont Thomas white they would have gotten a more forgiving sentence. But that's rather obvious if you look at the race disparities in convictions.

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I never heard any mention of race...I suspect you are right though...was there any mention of their mental state? They sound like they may have been "a bit slow." I suspect it was unintentional, and in that case they will serve hard time even if they were cleared of all charges...losing a child is hard, but losing it due to your own negligence must be devastating...

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  • 1 month later...

Isn't it interesting that a similar headline -

 

"Omnivorous couple kill their 6 week old kid by starving it to death because they couldn;t be bothered to breastfeed it , or even to feed it enough liquid-food as a replacement"

 

is assumedly so everyday, so tedious, so humdrum that they hardly ever bother to mention their flesh-eating in such a story, when it's reported - but oh my if a VEGAN couple kill a kid by starving it to death, what a brouhaha goes up over them being vegan !

 

It reflects attitudes about morality, veganism and flesh-eating which the flesh-eaters try so hard to deny to others and themselves.

 

I made a topic about this a while ago, where i went into more depth.

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