There is a notable sentencing in Washington of two parents who received 20-year prison terms for child abuse. The sentencing of Christopher Sefton, 30, and Lori Lloyd, 31, is unusually high due to the shocking level of abuse of their young children including beatings and making them eat disgusting hot dog-and-cooking oil smoothies. What is bizarre is that we read of parents who face senseless child wellfare actions for letting their kids play in their fenced in backyards or honest mistakes made at sporting events. Yet these two people were the subject of repeated complaints of abuse and their kids came to school bruised and under-nourished without any serious action taken.
Their 6-year-old boy was battered and emaciated when action was finally taken. He had been feeding himself out of school trash cans. His life at home was hell with Sefton and Lloyd forcing him to eat the smoothies and calisthenics while denying him sleep.
Sefton testified that he was as a “proactive” and “engaged” parent. A bit too engaged given photos of bruises on the children. The boy weighed just 50 pounds when he was placed in child protection. Teachers and other parents reportedly made dozens of calls without success to child welfare offices.
While school nurses and teachers did what they could (including bringing food in for the boy), Sefton objected that he was being discriminated against because he was a man raising his child. He threatened to sue if teachers would not stop feeding his son, who he described as a demon.
The record was more than sufficient to send them away for 20 years. However, there should also be demands for answers of how child welfare officials ignored the many calls from teachers and witnesses while these children were being tortured by these two sick individuals.