Parents Chose Bible Over Docs: Girl Dies
Police are investigating an 11-year-old girl's death from undiagnosed, treatable diabetes after her parents chose to pray for her rather than take her to a doctor.
An autopsy showed Madeline Neumann (picture left) died from diabetic ketoacidosis, a condition that left too little insulin in her body, Everest Metro Police Chief Dan Vergin said.
She had probably been ill for about a month, suffering symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, excessive thirst, loss of appetite and weakness, the chief said.
The girl's mother, Leilani Neumann, said the family believes in the Bible and that healing comes from God, but she said they do not belong to an organized religion or faith, are not fanatics and have nothing against doctors.
The family relied on the following Bible texts:
Matthew 7:7-8: "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
Mark 11:24: "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.."
John 14:12-14: "I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it."
Matthew 18:19-20: "Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."
Family members elsewhere called authorities to seek help for the girl.
"My sister-in-law, she's very religious, she believes in faith instead of doctors ...," the girl's aunt told a sheriff's dispatcher Sunday afternoon in a call from California. "And she called my mother-in-law today ... and she explained to us that she believes her daughter's in a coma now and she's relying on faith."
The dispatcher got more information from the caller and asked if an ambulance should be sent."Please," the woman replied. "I mean, she's refusing. She's going to fight it. ... We've been trying to get her to take her to the hospital for a week, a few days now."
The aunt called back with more information on the family's location, emergency logs show. Police and paramedics arrived within minutes and immediately called for an ambulance that took her to a hospital.
Leilani Neumann said she and her husband are not worried about the investigation because "our lives are in God's hands. We know we did not do anything criminal. We know we did the best for our daughter we knew how to do."