A disabled girl was found dead in a filthy room after being neglected and starved by her mother.
Karen Johnson Harrison, 50, was charged with manslaughter and second-degree murder after her 25-year-old daughter Cyra Shantelle Marie Harrison was found dead at her home in Plainview, Louisiana, back in 2018.
The young woman, who was suffering from cerebral palsy, was reportedly discovered in a filthy room where she was kept hungry and dehydrated by Harrison.
At the time the authorities found Cyra’s body, the girl was severely malnourished and weighed less than 65 pounds. She was found lying on a dirty mattress in a room filled with trash, rotting food, feces, and insects.
Following an autopsy, the coroner ruled the 25-year-old’s death a homicide and confirmed she had died from dehydration and starvation resulting from neglect.
After accepting a plea deal and accepting responsibility for manslaughter and conspiracy to commit second-degree murder, Harrison was sentenced to 50 years in prison.
“Karen Harrison will be over 100 years old at the conclusion of this sentence. We’ve effectively secured a life sentence without the inherent risks of a trial,” Attorney Brian Cespiva, prosecuting, said.
“I think it became clear to the defendant that was her only option.
I want to compliment my two prosecutors and I also want to compliment the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office for the hard work that they’ve done to bring this matter to conclusion and get justice for Cyra Harrison,” District Attorney Phillip Terrell added.
While Cespiva refused to comment on the specifics surrounding the case, he suggested this was “probably the most heinous crime that has ever occurred in Rapides Parish.”
Meanwhile, two other suspects involved in the 25-year-old’s death are yet to stand trial for second-degree murder charges. Marilyn Sue Maricle and Glen Elva Maricle have both been slapped with the same charges as Harrison according to the reports.
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