Jailed parents visit child before life-support removed

The parents of a two-year-old girl, who was ordered by an Alberta court to be removed from life-support, were taken under guard to the hospital Thursday morning to say their final goodbyes.

The Alberta Court of Appeal ruled Wednesday that the 34-year-old mother and father were to be allowed no more than 20 minutes to visit the child, who can only be identified as "M."

The parents are charged with beating and starving the girl and must visit her separately as they are not allowed contact with one another.

The visits to the Stollery Children's Hospital were ordered shortly after the appeal court upheld a lower court ruling that M be taken off life support as soon as reasonably possible.

The Court of Appeal also refused to grant a stay of the order pending an appeal to the Supreme Court, stating there were no grounds to take the case to Canada's top court.

On Thursday morning, April Kellett, the lawyer acting on behalf of the mother, filed a motion with the Supreme Court of Canada to keep the child on life-support .

CBC News learned early Thursday afternoon the province had filed a response and the top court judges would be considering the appeal "soon."

Child found starving, in cardiac arrest

Paramedics were called to the family's home in May where they found the child with a head injury and in cardiac arrest.

Both the girl and her twin sister were severely malnourished.

While her sister is recovering, doctors said M's brain damage is so severe that she will never regain consciousness.

The child's parents are being held in jail, facing charges of aggravated assault, criminal negligence causing bodily harm and failing to provide the necessities of life.

External Links

Read the Alberta Court of Appeal ruling
Read the Court of Queen's Bench ruling