Centralia couple facing four years of prison for severe neglect of son

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 7:39 pm

Anthony Foxworth Sr. and his attorney go before a judge today in Lewis County Superior Court

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The Centralia parents of a boy who at 16 years old was so malnourished he weighed less than 60 pounds, couldn’t stand on his own and was missing patches of hair are pleading guilty to criminal charges after a deal was struck with prosecutors, rather than risk going to trial.

Anthony Foxworth Sr., 45, pleaded guilty today in Lewis County Superior Court as charged, to one count of first-degree criminal mistreatment. His wife is scheduled to plead guilty next week, based on the same agreement, according to her lawyer.

Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer today told the judge he would be recommending a prison term of four years and three months.

The charges were filed at the end of last year, after an investigation that began almost a year earlier. The couple has not been held in jail.

The Centralia Police Department got involved after the Foxworth’s took their son to the doctor because he had abdominal pain, and his condition was such that he was put in Mary Bridge Childrens’ Hospital in Tacoma. Allegations in charging documents included that the teen had not been enrolled in school since 2011 and had not seen a doctor since 2007.

Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Melissa Bohm wrote in charging documents he had a younger brother and sister who were in school, appeared healthy and presented little concern.

But he was wearing pull-ups and his skeletal age was determined to be that of a 13-year-old child, Bohm wrote. The boy was put in foster care where he began to gain weight and grow taller.

No explanation has been shared by authorities, except, according to Bohm, Mary Foxworth said she thought he was starving himself because he was depressed; and admitted she didn’t know when he began to lose weight because she was too wrapped up in her own depression.

Her attorney Jacob Clark today said, outside the hearing, the risks of going to trial were too great, because if found guilty a judge could impose a much longer sentence.

“You go from a standard (sentencing) range of 51 to 68 months, all the way up to (potentially) 10 years,” Clark said.

Anthony Foxworth’s lawyer Chris Baum spoke of the same issue regarding his client in the proceeding this afternoon before Judge Joely O’Rourke.

“I told him he doesn’t have to plead, if you don’t want to we could go to trial,” Baum said. “But if we go to trial, the state’s made it clear, they’re going to put a bunch of aggravators on it.”

Today’s hearing didn’t last more than five minutes. Judge O’Rourke accepted the plea and found Foxworth Sr. guilty.

Baum outside the courtroom said part of the plea agreement is prosecutors will recommend the low end of the standard sentencing range.

“It’s kind of a sad situation all the way around,” Baum said. “He didn’t intend for this to happen and I know he feels bad.”

The legal standard for the offense is recklessness, he said, not intent.

The couple are both set to be sentenced on Nov. 1.

For background, read “‘Skin and bones’: Parents charged with severe neglect of teen” from Thursday January 5, 2017, here

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8 Responses to “Centralia couple facing four years of prison for severe neglect of son”

  1. Smorgushborg says:

    These people are p.o.s. And are the scapegoat for 100s of social workers and millions in funding harassing otherwise healthy kids and parents. You can’t prevent this they hid him for a decade?! All the kings horses and all the kings when couldn’t prevent this from happening again.

    Cut cps jobs punish the real abusers!

    The kids is alive so I guess this is somewhat of a success but it does not justify what’s going on with the cps epidemic around the country.

    They did take him to the hospital good for that but we do not know the mental illness, retardation or what prevented this kids from getting food. I see this guy is nice and plump. Obviously they didn’t know how or didn’t want to care for this kid. We really don’t know which one it was it’s easy to judge these people. Jail time really isn’t the answer. The headlines are meant to disturb you and it’s hard to understand but shit happens and people’s health decline. Unjudgemntal support and understanding might have prevented this which is the exact opposite of placing blame which is what most commentators on here are doing.

  2. spottedgrowl says:

    This is a classic example of the justice system failing a child! I can not believe they did not seek help for this poor boy 5 years and 11 months ago!!! 6 years of wasting away is inexcusable! Give each of the parents a minimum of 6 years in the hole with a slice of bread and a glass of water a day. She thought her son was starving himself because he was depressed but was too wrapped up in her own depression to notice when it started??? WTF??? I am sure somewhere around a year into it…say 5 years ago, one could simply LOOK at the kid and notice a problem!! And one could see right now from the sound of the kid’s physical description that there OBVIOUSLY WAS A HUGE PROBLEM. You don’t get to that physical state of being overnight….and she had to be somewhat functional in her depression to get the other 2 kids up and ready for school and keep them healthy… Didn’t notice when it started my ass! I am physically sick to my stomach at the thought of the horror and suffering that poor kid went through these last 6 years! And for the parents to be let off that easily just assures me that the Lewis County Court system is nothing but a kangaroo court full of self serving, pompous, horses asses….. This kid has been cheated in sooo many ways in his short life…at a time in a person’s life that is suposed to be magical and filled with no worries or problems…just cartoons and recesses and playing with your best friend riding bikes, catching frogs at the creek, playing video games and chasing girls, he is just trying to survive a life of hell and sorrow. What is wrong with people??????? Public hanging should be brought back…

  3. Sheena M Stoller says:

    Fours years that is justifiable what about the kid he was so neglected. And the parents get nothing for it that is why our world is so wrong sad day for the boy


    VOTERS , PLEASE research candidates, volunteer during campaigns, speak up, we will never be able to stop the hatred, but PEOPLE PLEASE, WE MUST NOT SET THESE EXAMPLES FOR OUR CHILDREN!!!
    I understand this is not an overall solution, but when this is the news , we need to let our children know that this is not right!!!!!

  5. Alan Rasmusson says:

    This is such HORSESHIT.These people should be taken out behind the courthouse, gut poked with a dull knife,chained and left to die a slow very painful death.The punishment being giving, is a slap on the wrist.What a joke.

  6. Arch says:

    Looks like this guy has never missed a meal. This fat boy should be starved just like he did the child he was responsible for. Maybe a few days of hard labor might be in order. A plea bargain? Can you image the pleas for food the young boy must have said.

  7. Sasha Brewer says:

    This is heartbreaking. I pray that this young man have healing for all the emotional, physical, psychological that has been done to him.
    I will never understand how a parent can do things like this.

  8. Autumn says:

    $o you can fuck up your kids and still get a plea bargin how screwed up is that. Who protects the kids when they get out? Oh don’t tell me they get rhe kids back

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