A Greenville, Pennsylvania mother and her parents were ordered to stand trial Thursday for the attempted murder of her 8-year old son. According to a report by Fox News, the child was allegedly fed so little that he resorted to eating bugs when he was permitted to go on the back porch.
The child was removed from the home of Mary Rader, 28 and her parents Deana Beighley, 48; and his step-grandfather, Dennis Beighley, 59 in June by social workers after a neighbor reported seeing the boy, who was 7 at the time, and describing him as a "walking skeleton." Doctors from Greenville Medical Center compared the 24- pound child to a Holocaust survivor and said that that the child likely would have only survived one more month.
Attorneys for Rader and Beighley, allege the boy has a growth hormone problem which is why he can not gain weight.
Rader's attorney, Jack Cline says "I think there's no question what happened here was a tragedy, but the question is who's responsible for it and whether it's a criminal offense."
Prosecutors gave a very different story in court, instead of a tragedy that "It sounds more to me like a situation that got away from them," as Beighley's attorney Neil Rothschild claims. District Attorney Robert Kochems alleges that the boy was hidden away and that the neighbor who reported seeing the child hadn't even known he existed. The neighbor only knew of the child's three siblings.
It is believed, but not listed as an official motive, that Deana Beighley disliked the child and encouraged the others in the house to mistreat him.
District Judge Brian Arthur set each of the defendants bail at $100,000 each and remanded them to jail until trial. The courtroom, filled with approximately 60 spectators, burst into applause.
All four of Rader's children are in foster care. The victim has gained 20 pounds since being taken from the home.