Sam Koets

Photo of a smiling boy in a helmet. His arms are strapped to his sides.Name: Sam Koets.
Died: March 28, 2019.
Age at death: 16.
Cause of death: Neglect/Abuse.
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.
Disability: Autism.

Sam was made to live in the family’s unfinished basement, in horrible conditions. He died when his father left him alone, hands tied, near the family’s pool on a cold spring day. A little while later, he texted Sam’s thirteen-year-old sister, asking her to check on Sam. She sent back a photo of Sam, wading chest-deep in the pool, which was so cold it had ice floating on top. Sam’s father, however, did nothing to help Sam; he did not call emergency services, attempt to return home, or contact anyone but Sam’s thirteen-year-old sister who was watching Sam die in front of her eyes. Sam’s body was found floating in the icy pool; he had been dead at least an hour.

Perpetrator: Timothy Koets (Father), charged with manslaughter, second-degree child abuse, second-degree child abuse committed in the presence of another child and fourth-degree child abuse.

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Judith Howe

No PhotoName: Judith Howe.
Died: April 16, 2018.
Age at death: 73.
Cause of death: Neglect.
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.
Disability: Alzheimer’s disease, aphasia.

Judith’s daughter neglected her. When told by friends that she should take Judith to the doctor, Judith’s daughter refused despite her mother’s worsening condition. Instead of caring for her mother, she spent her mother’s money on herself. Eventually someone called for a welfare check, and Judith was brought to the hospital with severe bedsores, weighing 80 pounds. Too far gone to survive, she died in hospice from a combination of infection and malnutrition.

Perpetrator: Sandy Howe (Daughter), charged with first-degree murder, abuse, and neglect.

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