Trial date set for Park City mom accused of not giving son medicine after transplant
The trial date for a Park City woman accused of failing give her son the medical care he required after a heart transplant has been set for February.
Lake County Judge Daniel Shanes set Jennifer Stroud's involuntary manslaughter trial to begin on Tuesday, Feb. 18.
Both defense attorney Elliot Pinsel and Assistant Lake County State's Attorney Eric Kalata expressed concern that the trial could run into the next week. Shanes said he understood that the trial could run long and directed the lawyers to try to streamline some of the material.
Stroud faces felony charges of involuntary manslaughter and endangering the life of a child.
Attempts to avoid a trial by having Stroud agree to a plea deal broke down over the summer.
A conviction of involuntary manslaughter carries a prison sentence of up to seven years, while the endangering charge comes with a maximum prison sentence of five years. Both charges are also probationable.
Jason Stroud was a sixth-grader at Woodland Middle School in Gurnee when he died on Sept 11, 2016, four years after undergoing heart transplant surgery in Milwaukee.
The Strouds moved from Milwaukee to Park City in 2015 and were expected to take Jason to Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital in Chicago for regular visits. The parents were also tasked with giving Jason daily medication to prevent his body from rejecting the heart, authorities said.
When Jason missed several hospital appointments between December 2015 and August 2016, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services performed a well-being check, authorities said. During the visit, Jason was taken to a hospital where doctors determined his body was rejecting the donor heart because he had not been taking the required medication, authorities said.
David Stroud, 43, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in May, and was sentenced to five years in prison. He agreed to testify should the case against Jennifer Stroud go to trial.
David and Jennifer Stroud were co-defendants at one point, but the case was severed after the couple filed for divorce in July 2017. During previous hearings, attorneys said the Strouds planned to blame each other should the case go to trial.
Jennifer Stroud was released from the Lake County jail after posting 10 percent of her $75,000 bail. She next appears in court on Nov. 26.