LOGAN, W.Va. — More than half a year has passed since the Thanksgiving 2015 death of a four year old girl from Omar, W.Va., and, as a result of investigation from the West Virginia State Police (WVSP), the girls parents have been arrested and charged with child neglect resulting in death.
The child reportedly suffered from glycogen storage disease. The disease reportedly affects the way in which a body turns food into energy often causing blood sugar dips between meals.
Those stricken with glycogen storage disease are often forced to eat every few hours to keep their body regulated.
Sergeant L.D. Hensley, with the WVSP, reports a joint investigation was launched by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and the WVSP following the child’s death.
Hensley reports the investigation eventually uncovered evidence the child had not been taken to doctors appointments and her prescriptions had not regularly been filled.
Reports of abnormal glucose levels had allegedly not been registered with doctors.
The criminal complaint filed by Hensley reports the victim’s physician believes the child died as a result of poor management of the condition.
The child’s parents, Derek and Catherine Hicks, were both arrested July 13 and were each charged with a felony count of child neglect resulting in death.
Preliminary hearings for Derek and Catherine Hicks have been set for July 22 in Logan County.
If they are found guilty, Derek and Catherine Hicks could each be forced to spend between three and 15 years in a state correctional facility and pay up to $5,000 in fines.
Bond for both Derek and Catherine Hicks was set to $25,000 in Logan County Magistrate Court.
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Criminal complaints are public information, and any charges contained therein are merely accusations. Anyone accused of a crime should be considered innocent until they are proven guilty.
Owen Wells is a reporter for Civitas Media. He can be reached at 304-752-6950 or by email at [email protected]