Wisconsin Supreme Court asked to hear prayer death case - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Wisconsin Supreme Court asked to hear prayer death case

The Wisconsin Supreme Court could hear an appeal from the Weston parents convicted of killing their 11-year-old daughter. 

In 2009, a jury found Dale and Leilani Neumann guilty of second degree reckless homicide. Prosecutors say the couple prayed instead of taking their daughter, Kara, to a doctor in 2008. 

The Neumanns argued that there are inconsistencies in state statutes regarding faith healing and parent's duty to provide medical care. District 3 Court of Appeals Judges P.J. Hoover and JJ. Mangerson wrote that those are statutory construction and constitutional issues that would be best decided by the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

In addition, the Neumanns claimed that jurors were not properly instructed regarding a parent's duty to provide medical care for a child. The appeals court judges maintained that the Supreme Court would be equipped to inform trial courts regarding appropriate jury instructions. 

In 2011, a lawyer argued Leilani's original attorney didn't present a strong enough defense due to health problems. Dale's lawyer said jurors who heard his case were influenced when they learned of Leilani's guilty verdict.

Doctors say the couple's daughter died because the Neumanns didn't seek treatment for Kara's diabetes.


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