Years ago, I watched an episode involving The State of Missouri vs Patricia Stallings. Mrs. Stallings was accused of killing her child by feeding him antifreeze, was found guilty, and sentenced to life. However she was pregnant again at the time of her sentencing. The child was handed to the state & the father allowed supervised visits. Mrs. Stallings never even touched her child. A few years went by and this child started to exhibit the same symptoms as the child who had died. This time the child was taken to a more sophisticated hospital which diagnosed the child not with antifreeze poisoning but with a genetic disease called methylmalonic acidemia, a genetic disease which, if not diagnosed promptly, can lead to death.
Fast forward to the late '90's, early 2000's. I was watching the news one evening and to my horror, heard of the arrest of a teenage mother for poisoning her child with antifreeze. I called my younger daughter and between us we found the case and particulars. Jessica called the news and they were less than interested. I however, called the police hotline. It helped a lot to first let the policewoman who answered that I am an RN with a BSN and that the case that would help them was the one stated above. I told her that the child MUST be tested for the methylmalonic acidemia before the mother was brought to trial. I explained everything I have written above and because I am a nurse, I was listened to. I also stated that the doctor involved should not be faulted for not knowing about the genetic disease because I would never have known about it except for the New Detectives. I was thanked for calling. And there was never another word on the news or in the newspaper. If that poor girl had been guilty, her trial would have been all over the news. I was very disappointed that there wasn't even a "the facts of the case were re-examined and no evidence of a crime found so the case was closed. But if I had not seen that episode of The New Detectives, she might have received the death penalty in my state.