9-Year-Old Forced to “Run to Death”

    This undated photo released by the Etowah County Sheriff's Dept. Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012 shows 9-year-old Savannah Hardin. Authorities say they've charged a grandmother and stepmother of the girl, who died after being forced to run as punishment. Etowah County sheriff's officials say 46-year-old Joyce Hardin Garrard of Carlisle and 27-year-old Jessica Mae Hardin are accused of murder in the death of Savannah Hardin. Investigators say Garrard allegedly made the girl run without stopping for there hours as punishment for lying to her. (AP Photo/Etowah County Sheriffs Office)

    Etowah County Sheriffs Office / AP Photo

    Three days after police say 9-year-old Savannah Hardin was made to run for three hours as punishment for eating a candy bar, authorities in Alabama are saying her death Monday was a homicide. The girl’s grandmother and stepmother are in custody for the punishment that allegedly led the girl to become dehydrated and have a seizure—and now police are saying that the stepmother, 27-year-old Jessica Mae Hardin, gave birth hours after her arrest. She is being held with her mother-in-law on bail of $500,000 each. The Etowah County District Attorney has told reporters that Jessica suffered from a bladder condition that prohibited her from eating chocolate, but that there is not any evidence the condition contributed to her death.

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