A Danish woman has been sentenced to four years in prison for stealing her son’s blood. The mother drained blood from the child between the ages of one and six, sometimes as regularly as once a week.
The 36-year-old, who was a trained nurse, used a catheter to drain blood from her son 110 times over a five-year period. The court in Herning, Denmark, told doctors that the boy’s low blood count was down to a rare bone marrow condition.
However, the hospital became suspicious and informed the police, who covertly filmed the mother.
A court-ordered psychiatrist diagnosed the woman with Munchausen syndrome by proxy, a mental health disorder where caregivers make a dependent ill to draw attention to themselves.
Apparently, the woman had been draining her son’s blood since he was 11-months-old, using the veins in his chest.
The woman told the court: “It wasn’t a decision I just made. I don’t know when I started doing something I didn’t have to. It happened gradually. I flushed the blood down the toilet and burned the syringes in the bin.”
When asked why she did it, she said: “‘I wish I could answer you, but I can’t. I wish I could.”
The boy, now seven, is healthy and living with his father.