The doctor involved in the case of a teen who died of starvation decided to go ahead with her no contest plea in court and agreed to give up her medical license.
Margaret Edwards, 51, originally pleaded no contest to three first-degree misdemeanor counts of failure to report child abuse or neglect of a functionally impaired person. Edwards was the doctor of Makayla Norman, 14, who had cerebral palsy, could not speak, move, or feed herself. Norman weighed 28 pounds when she died March 1, 2011.
In May, Edwards sought to withdraw her plea and retained a new attorney. On Monday morning in Montgomery County Juvenile Court after two hours of closed-door talks, Edwards withdrew her motion to withdraw her plea.
Edwards, who had been found guilty by Judge Nick Kuntz, will be sentenced Aug. 6. The judge could sentence Edwards to up to 18 months behind bars.
“They’re going to have to make the arguments that they want,” said Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr., who personally attended the hearing. “Our position has always been that she needs to go to jail.”
One of Edwards’ new attorneys, Todd Long, declined comment on Monday.
Edwards, of Trotwood, is the last of five people to be criminally prosecuted in connection with the 14-year-old’s starvation death. Norman’s mother Angela, and her nurse Mollie Parsons are already serving prison terms. Two other nurses, Kathryn Williams and Mary Kilby, who were to supervise Norman’s care have also been convicted of felonies.
When Norman died, her body was covered with filth and open bedsores, her hair and eyebrows were infested with lice, and her diaper and colon filled with feces, according to Dayton police.
Heck praised assistant prosecutors Tracey Ballard Tangeman and Erin Claypoole for “holding people responsible and seeking justice for this young, poor victim.”
Heck earlier said Edwards was required to provide care and treatment for Norman and to inspect the living conditions of her home. A civil case involving Norman’s estate has been scheduled for April 2014.