Hospital discharges starved haredi boy

Three-year-old released to the care of relatives until proceedings against his mother are concluded.

child starving mother with guard 248.88 (photo credit: AP)
child starving mother with guard 248.88
(photo credit: AP)
The three-year-old boy who was allegedly starved by his mother and who became the center of a political and religious storm following the woman's arrest, was released Friday from Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer. Relatives of the boy picked him up from the hospital and will be caring for him until the completion of the legal proceedings against his mother. Last month, news of the alleged abuse and the subsequent arrest of the mother sparked days of riots in Jerusalem. Members of the Toldot Aharon hassidic sect, to which the mother and her family belong, charged that the hospital staff and police were acting recklessly in accusing the mother of wrongdoing. According to the woman and her supporters, the boy suffered from multiple illnesses which prevented him from eating properly. Doctors charged, however, that it was the mother who caused the boy to fall ill repeatedly through his lack of proper nourishment. They claimed that a hidden video showing the mother removing a vital feeding tube from her son's abdomen during his lengthy hospitalization at Hadassah-University Hospital at Ein Kerem, was evidence enough to turn to the police. Since her arrest, the mother has consistently refused to cooperate with investigators, and has been erratic in appearing for both court hearings and psychiatric evaluations. Last week she was deemed fit to stand trial, and her next hearing is scheduled for August 4. The boy, who was admitted to Hadassah weighing a mere 7 kilograms, was transferred to Sheba after Hadassah staffers received repeated threats, and following continued protests outside the hospital. When he was released, the boy was said to weigh over 10 kilograms.