Thursday, July 12, 2007

Daughters Starve Mother to Death

By MATT HANLEY Staff Writer Officials: Elderly woman's death may be neglect

GENEVA -Illinois - The Kane County state's attorney office is investigating whether to bring neglect charges against family members of an 84-year-old woman who died of severe dehydration and malnutrition.

Mary Barry, of the 400 block of Peyton Street, Geneva, died April 27, a week after she was brought to Delnor-Community Hospital by Geneva Fire Department paramedics.

At a coroner's inquest Wednesday, her death was ruled a homicide, with blame to be placed on Barry's two adult daughters who lived with her.

"This is a very unusual case, and it's a case all of us are sickened by," said Kane County Coroner Chuck West. "This kind of behavior denotes a criminal act."

In a rare circumstance, the coroner's office showed the jury blown-up pictures of Barry's body. The pictures showed an emaciated and bruised woman who was "literally skin and bones," according to Deputy Coroner Loren Carrera.

When medics came to her house April 20, she weighed barely 70 pounds. The pictures shown to the jury looked like the body of a famine victim.

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