Dale Neumann, 47, was convicted over the March 23, 2008, death of his
daughter, Madeline, from undiagnosed diabetes.
Prosecutors argued he should have rushed the girl to a hospital because she
could not walk, talk, eat or drink. Instead, Madeline died on the floor of
the family’s rural home as people surrounded her and prayed. Someone called
an ambulance when she stopped breathing.
Defence lawyer Jay Kronenwetter said the verdict would be appealed.
Neumann, who once studied to be a Pentecostal minister, testified that he
believed God would heal his daughter and he never expected her to die. God
promises in the Bible to heal, he said.
“If I go to the doctor, I am putting the doctor before God,” Neumann
testified. “I am not believing what he said he would do.”
The father testified that he thought Madeline had the flu or a fever, and
several relatives and family friends said they also did not realise how ill
Leilani Neumann, 41, was convicted of the same charge in the spring. Marathon
County Circuit Judge Vincent Howard set October 6 for sentencing for both
parents, who face up to 25 years in prison.
Their case is believed to be the first in the Midwestern state of Wisconsin
involving faith healing in which someone died and another person was charged
with a homicide.
Last month, a jury in the western state of Oregon convicted a man of criminal
mistreatment for relying on prayer instead of seeking medical care for his
15-month-old daughter, who died of pneumonia and a blood infection in March
2008. Both the girl’s parents were acquitted of a more serious manslaughter
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