CLEVELAND – The parents of an 8-year-old boy who died from Hodgkin's lymphoma were indicted Wednesday on charges they denied him medical treatment.
Willie Robinson, who collapsed at his home on March 22, 2008, had begged his parents to take him to see a doctor but was rejected, prosecutors said.
While the boy suffered, his parents, who claimed they didn't have much money, paid $87 to have a pit bull treated for fleas, investigators said.
"They never once took him to a doctor," said Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason. "It just is not right. This kid should be alive today."
A grand jury indicted the parents, William Robinson Sr. and Monica Hussing, on charges of involuntary manslaughter, child endangering and felonious assault.
A message seeking comment was left after business hours for Margaret Isquick, an attorney who has represented Hussing.
Cuyahoga County Coroner Frank Miller ruled that Willie was the victim of medical neglect -- he died from pneumonia due to Hodgkin's lymphoma. "HOMICIDE," concludes the coroner's verdict.
Hodgkin's lymphoma is a highly treatable cancer with as many as 95 percent of patients in early stages of the disease surviving for five years or more with treatment. It's also one of the most common forms of cancers to strike children.