Crime

Woman Sentenced For Letting Maggots Eat Her Husband

| by Lauren Briggs

A California mother of two received her sentence after she pleaded guilty to letting maggots eat her paraplegic husband alive under her care.

She will serve four years in prison for multiple abuse charges.

Dormanicia Lawson, 37, was first charged with homicide in the death of her husband, Mark Fulgham, 36, though the court dropped the charge after a jury was unable to agree on whether or not she had murdered Fulgham, reports the East Bay Times. Instead, she entered a guilty plea for spousal abuse, which, combined with two child abuse convictions, will put her behind bars for up to four years.

Because the abuse charges are considered nonviolent crimes, she will be eligible for release in as little as two years.

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Fulgham died at a hospital in December 2015, having been taken there by paramedics after struggling to breathe. Hospital workers say he was covered in bedsores and had maggots in his wounds.

Detectives then visited the filthy, unsanitary apartment in Concord the couple shared with their two children, an 11-year-old and a 19-year-old with severe autism, notes KNTV. At the home, they found a mattress infested with maggots and cockroaches, dead flies in the ceiling and a strong odor.

Officers called the case one of the worst instance of abuse they had ever seen.

"He could not talk," Concord police spokesman Corporal Christopher Blakely said of Fulgham. "He had shortness of breath. He had maggots that were eating his body."

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Lawson reportedly had "no explanation" for the situation "other than she was tired and stressed," though her attorney later said that her husband was abusive toward her and continually refused treatment.

"Mr. Fulgham was rotting to death," prosecutor Jill Henderson said during the trial, according to The Mercury News.

Henderson said Fulgham, who was wheelchair-bound, suffered from sepsis, respiratory failure, hypothermia, stage four ulcers, kidney failure, abscesses and dehydration at the time of his death, all of which she said are "signs of neglect."

"[Lawson] didn't care that he was dying," added Henderson.

Sources: KNTV, The Mercury News, East Bay Times / Photo credit: Facebook via Daily Mail

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