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Tenn. woman indicted in death of son with Down syndrome

Authorities arrested a man Saturday after he led them on a chase through three counties that included four stolen vehicles, the last of which he drove into the Tennessee River./Source: MGN
Authorities arrested a man Saturday after he led them on a chase through three counties that included four stolen vehicles, the last of which he drove into the Tennessee River./Source: MGN(WVLT)
Published: May. 27, 2020 at 12:15 PM EDT
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A Tennessee woman was indicted on a first-degree murder charge in the death of her adult son with special needs.

Betty Ann Stafford is accused of neglecting and mistreating her 42-year-old son with Down syndrome, according to White County District Attorney Bryant Dunaway.

Officials said Mark Stafford weighed only 54 pounds when he died. According to an autopsy, his death was caused by severe malnutrition and sepsis caused by severe sores on his body.

Stafford was arrested on Friday and booked into the White County Jail. A grand jury indicted her on additional charges including aggravated neglect of vulnerable adult and first-degree felony murder.

Investigators said Stafford was reportedly the caretaker of older, elder and vulnerable adults. Police are investigating other potential victims.

Copyright 2020 WVLT via WTVF. All rights reserved.

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