Blogging mommy Lacey Spears seemed like the all-American mom who got dealt a bad hand in life. Her son’s father had allegedly died in a car accident, leaving Lacey to raise their son as a single mom. To make matters worse, Garnett was in and out of the hospital with chronic illness. Lacey tried to turn her hardships into strength and began blogging about Garnett’s prognosis.
On November 11, 2009 Lacey writes on her Twitter:
“My Sweet Angel Is In The Hospital For The 23rd Time 🙁 Please Pray He Gets To Come Home Soon…”
Garnett was a newborn infant at the time of her post, and it certainly wouldn’t be his last hospital stay. By the time the boy had reached age of 5, little Garnett was equipped with a feeding tube and doctors couldn’t seem to get to the bottom of the various illnesses the boy had been suffering from. For most parents, a chronically ill child is a source of constant worry and heartache, but Lacey seemed to take Garnett’s illness in stride and even reveled in the attention she received from friends and strangers across the internet.
On January 19, 2014 Lacey had rushed Garnett to the hospital once again. The boy had been having seizures and blood tests were able to show that his sodium levels were alarmingly high. Doctors were baffled, but Lacey continued to post photos of her sickly and dying child to her Facebook up until his final moments. By January 23, 5-year-old Garnett would be dead.
Garnett’s death was ruled a homicide and, according to prosecutors for the case, Lacey Spears was the murderer. Using the boy’s feeding tube, Spears introduced toxic amounts of sodium into the boy’s system. Hospital cameras showed her taking the boy into the bathroom multiple times, where it is believed that she continued to give the boy potentially fatal doses of salt. Toxicology tests proved that there was as much as 69 McDonald’s salt packets worth of sodium in the boy’s system at the time of his death.
It’s been claimed that Lacey Spears was suffering from Munchausen by proxy, an unusual neurotic disorder where a caretaker purposefully makes a person ill in order to get attention. Often the victims are children and many times caretakers go undiagnosed until tragedy strikes.
Lacey venomously denied the allegations against her, and even speculated that Garnett could have been responsible for his own death. At her home, two feeding bags were found and tests showed that they both contained high levels of sodium. There had also been a container of sea salt sitting open on her kitchen counter. A neighbor testified during her trial that Spears had asked them to hide the bags before investigators arrived at the residence.
In March of 2015, a jury found Spears guilty of second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter. She is currently serving 20 years to life in prison. Spears had always maintained her innocence and, in light of what came out during her trial, there are still those who stand beside her.
While the Facebook page “Mothers 4 Lacey Spears” may not have many followers, Spears’ first television interview may change some opinions. Her supporters claim that Spears was unjustly portrayed as a child-killing monster before she had even seen her day in court, and that media propaganda was responsible for her guilty verdict.
The Lacey Spears 48-Hours interview airs on April 9, 2016 at 10 PM ET/PT on CBS.