Attorney says Schaumburg mom's health deteriorating in prison

Attorney says she has dropped to 84 lbs. but isn't in medical unit

 
 
Updated 7/7/2016 11:25 PM
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  • Bonnie Liltz

    Bonnie Liltz

A Schaumburg woman sentenced to four years in prison for the 2015 death of her severely disabled daughter has been transferred to a prison in central Illinois, where she is not housed in a medical unit in spite of chronic medical conditions, her attorney said.

Attorney Thomas Glasgow said Bonnie Liltz, who has an ostomy pouch, has dropped to 84 pounds and has had two infections. He referred to Liltz's worsening health in his unsuccessful plea this week for a Cook County judge to reduce Liltz's four-year sentence.

Glasgow confirmed late Thursday that he will file a notice of appeal Friday to move jurisdiction of Liltz's case to the appellate court.

"She is not doing well in the penitentiary," Glasgow said.

Liltz, 56, pleaded guilty in May to an amended charge of voluntary manslaughter in the death of 28-year-old Courtney Liltz.

Bonnie Liltz initially had been charged with murder for giving Courtney an overdose of prescription drugs. Courtney, who was adopted at age 5, had cerebral palsy, could neither walk nor talk and required 24-hour care.

An Illinois Department of Corrections spokesman could not comment on Liltz's health or treatment.

The department "provides medical treatment to all offenders who have been diagnosed with a chronic illness," spokeswoman Nicole Wilson said.

Liltz has been transferred to Logan Correctional Center, a women's prison near Lincoln. It has a mental health unit and a "state-of-the-art medical facility designated to provide care to pregnant and critically or terminally ill female offenders," according to its website.

Liltz's health issues resulted from treatment for ovarian cancer she received in 1981, which included radiation therapy that caused organ damage subsequent surgeries could not repair, according to court records. In February, Liltz, who was hospitalized for dehydration a month earlier, underwent a colostomy, court records show.

Liltz's supporters have said she was distraught about her health problems, feared she would no longer be able to care for Courtney and worried her daughter would be institutionalized.

Awaking early on May 27, 2015 and feeling very ill, Liltz fed herself and her daughter an overdose of prescription drugs. Courtney died about a week later without regaining consciousness.

After prosecutors amended the charge, Glasgow sought and prosecutors recommended four years' probation and mental health treatment in exchange for Liltz's guilty plea.

Saying "all life is precious ... even a life that is profoundly disabled," Cook County Judge Joel Greenblatt sentenced Liltz to four years in prison, the minimum for involuntary manslaughter. She must serve at least 50 percent of her sentence before she is eligible for parole.

Court records show prosecutors offered no counterargument to Glasgow's motion this week to reconsider the sentence.

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