JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Authorities in Florida have charged a woman with intentionally poisoning a girl in her care by making her take excessive amounts of iron supplements, damaging her liver, court records show.
According to The Florida Times-Union (http://bit.ly/1QhomBo), 38-year-old Shauna Dee Taylor was extradited to Jacksonville Dec. 3 after being arrested in Albany, New York, on a warrant issued in September, arrest records show. She's charged with aggravated child abuse and child neglect.
Duval County's case against Taylor stems from a series of medical procedures in 2013 after which three medical professionals said Taylor intentionally poisoned the girl.
Authorities said the charges seem to constitute a case of Munchausen syndrome by proxy, which involve caretakers who purposely harm a child to gain attention or sympathy.
The victim's age and her relation to Taylor haven't been released.
According to an arrest warrant, Taylor brought the child to a hospital multiple times during early 2013 for various reasons, including eating issues. Several tests and procedures were performed.
The arrest warrant states that an ultrasound showed the girl's liver was abnormal, that doctors found it was being damaged and that a series of lab tests revealed high iron levels. Taylor denied ever giving the child iron even when discharge instructions for the child in a previous hospitalization included a prescription for iron.
Taylor was not told about the high iron level until March 25, according to the arrest warrant, and when she stopped administering iron to the child the iron levels returned to normal without treatment.
Taylor is listed as a resident of Baker County, where Sheriff Joey Dobson said his office investigated the child abuse claims but they were not able to take Taylor to court.
"We couldn't get enough (evidence) to get the State Attorney's Office to prosecute," Dobson said.
Dobson said he believes Taylor recently moved out of the county due to pressure from investigators looking into possible child abuse.
Information from: The (Jacksonville) Florida Times-Union, http://www.jacksonville.com