According to the Washington Post, Alabama authorities have arrested a stepmother and a grandmother for forcing a 9-year-old girl to run for 3 hours on Friday, as punishment for eating candy bars.
The girl’s stepmother, 27-year-old Jessica Mae Hardin, called police at 6:45 p.m., telling them Savannah was having a seizure and was unresponsive. Paramedics and deputies arriving at the home knew something wasn’t right.
Deputies were told that Savannah was made to run as punishment for lying to her grandmother, Joyce Hardin Garrard, 46, about eating her candy bars.
Without adequate water or salt intake after three hours of grueling roadwork, Savannah Hardin collapsed and suffered seizures. Savannah died Monday at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, of a cardiac arrest.
The sheriff’s press release said an autopsy report showed Savannah was extremely dehydrated and had a very low sodium (salt) level. A state pathologist ruled it a homicide.