BINGHAMTON, N.Y. – A New York couple has been sentenced to prison for giving their emaciated and disabled 5-year-old son a lethal overdose of the opioid painkiller oxycodone through his feeding tube.
Broome County Court Judge Kevin Dooley sentenced 46-year-old Charles Burks to 13 years and 40-year-old Jennifer Burks to nine years in prison on Thursday. They had pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
District Attorney Steve Cornwell says the couple's child was severely handicapped after they gave him methadone in 2015 in their home in Endicott, near the Pennsylvania border.
The boy died a year later after they gave him a deadly dose of oxycodone. The couple claimed they were treating his pain.
Cornwell says Charles Burks had a methadone prescription, but the oxycodone was purchased illegally.
Defense attorneys declined to comment after sentencing.