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Parents arrested for failing to properly care for 1-year-old after liver transplant

A mom and dad in New Mexico have been charged with child abuse, with prosecutors claiming that they failed to take their 1-year-old son to his doctor appointments — and refused to give him medication — after he had a liver transplant. Kyla and Jason Witterman, of San Juan County, were both arrested this week...

A mom and dad in New Mexico have been charged with child abuse, with prosecutors claiming that they failed to take their 1-year-old son to his doctor appointments — and refused to give him medication — after he had a liver transplant.

Kyla and Jason Witterman, of San Juan County, were both arrested this week following a year-long investigation, according to KOAT.

Court documents filed Monday describe how the pair was reported to authorities by their child’s doctor, who noticed that they were missing appointments and grew concerned.

“[People who receive transplants] need to continue taking anti-rejection medication, and the anti-rejection medications keeps your body, the person who receives the transplant, from rejecting that valuable organ that was transplanted to them,” explained Maria Sanders, an educator with New Mexico Donor Services.

“It’s very disheartening to hear about situations where a person who receives a transplant isn’t taking care of that organ,” she told KOAT. “It is an extremely precious gift.”

Authorities have placed the 1-year-old boy — who received the transplant in April 2018 — in state custody, along with his 13-year-old brother. They are both staying with a family member at the moment.

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