Mom gets 9 months after re-trial

The adoptive mother of a 15-year-old boy was convicted April 18 of felony child endangerment for withholding HIV medication from the teen.

County police were contacted by social services in February 2006. The case ended in a hung jury last November when defense attorneys argued the teen could have been lying to escape a strict household.

But this trial convinced a jury of nine women and three men that from 2001 to 2005, the mother of five had allowed her son’s T-cell count to drop dangerously low. The medication, according to Commonwealth’s witness Dr. Gregory Townsend, is intended to keep viral load down while boosting T-cells in the immune system.

The teen testified in the previous trial that his mom instead treated his illness with Barley Green, an herbal supplement whose manufacturers have previously gotten slapped by the FDA for false marketing.

Judge Edward L. Hogshire sentenced the 51-year-old woman to nine months for the charges, which could have carried a sentence of up to five years.

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