By Monica Land
PEARL – A woman who plead guilty to manslaughter for the starvation death of her 2-year-old son in 2010 died of lupus, the medical examiner has said.
Tara Booth, a spokeswoman for the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC), said Hood had been taken to the prison’s infirmary and died while in the medical clinic.
An autopsy report issued by the state medical examiner said the primary cause of Hood’s death was “complications of systematic lupus.”
Hood pleaded guilty in 2010 to manslaughter and felonious child abuse in Pike County Circuit Court in the death of her son, Markqice Hood.
Markqice died on May 16, 2008.
Reportedly, state officials became aware of Markqice’s case when a family member called the Department of Human Services (DHS) out of concern for the boy.
During trial, Hood’s then boyfriend, Thomas Kelly, gave a statement that a DHS case worker determined the toddler was “naturally small for his age.”
Kelly also said one morning the child seemed ill and he suggested Hood take Markqice to the hospital but she refused, saying she might be accused of child abuse.
Court documents reportedly showed that Hood didn’t give her son adequate food and Kelly knew about it but failed to report it.
Authorities found the child’s body in his bed at a home shared by Kelly and Hood in McComb. They said Markqice was in a severely malnourished condition and appeared to have been dead for some time.
Kelly, now 27, later plead
guilty to manslaughter and felonious child abuse. He was initially sentenced to 40 years in prison. He remains in MDOC custody.
Hood was sentence to 20 years for manslaughter and 50 years for child abuse with 10 years suspended. The sentences were ordered to run concurrently.