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Entries in Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (1)

Friday
Apr152011

Mom Sentenced in Autistic Son's Leukemia Death

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(BOSTON) -- Kristen LaBrie, the Salem, Mass., mom found guilty of attempted murder for withholding chemotherapy medications from her autistic son, was sentenced Friday to eight-to-10 years in prison.

Prosecutors in the case argued that LaBrie committed murder by withholding potentially lifesaving medications for her nine-year-old son, Jeremy Fraser. The defense admitted that LaBrie knowingly withheld her son's medications, but said she did so only because of their painful side effects.

Prosecutors asked for a harsher jail term of 16 years. LaBrie's lawyer hoped for a one-year sentence.

In October 2006, nine-year-old Jeremy was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, but doctors gave him an 85 percent to 90 percent chance of recovery, Assistant District Attorney Kate MacDougall said during the arraignment in 2009. Large doses of chemotherapy were given to the boy in the hospital, and his cancer went into remission.

His mother was given prescriptions for medications he was to be given at home. During the arraignment, MacDougall said LaBrie repeatedly failed to pick up prescriptions but led doctors to believe she was getting them filled, even asking at one point for a liquid version of the medication because her son was having difficulty swallowing pills.

In February 2008, after one of Jeremy's doctors called LaBrie's pharmacy and learned she had not been filling prescriptions, LaBrie said the pharmacy must have made a mistake, MacDougall said. It was at that point that doctors learned the boy's cancer had returned as leukemia and was no longer treatable with chemotherapy, she said. The boy died in 2009.

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