A Michigan couple who allowed their infant child to die after refusing to get help for personal religious reasons have given a staggering reaction to being charged with murder for their crimes.
Seth Welch and Tatiana Fusari, both 27, were charged with felony murder and first-degree child abuse after they refused to get help for their gravely sick child, Mary. In a stunning moment of shock caught on camera during court proceedings, Seth can be seen with his mouth wide open as the charges are by the judge.
An autopsy conducted on Friday determined that the cause of death was clear-cut malnutrition and dehydration due to neglect by adult caregivers. The parents, from Cedar Springs, said they refused to get help out of a fear of having Child Protective Services called, who they described as having a “lack of faith and trust in medical services and religious reasons.”
In a series of rambling videos, Welch talked at length about his dislike of CPS, and even suggested that children should not be vaccinated, but should instead trust that “God is sovereign over disease,” according to the Daily Mail.
According to authorities, the couple had noticed that their daughter was looking unwell for a period of months, but did nothing to help her. When Mary deteriorated and died in her cot, Welch reportedly called 911 and did claimed he had found she had died out of the blue.
“Heart is about shattered right now,” Welch wrote on Facebook following his daughter’s passing. “Woke up to Mary dead in her bed this morning – this evening had our children removed and placed on “no contact” because Tati and I are the worst parents ever – Thankfully they are with grandma and grandpa.”
He continued: “Just numb inside right now. And I’m really enjoying the loving embrace of an isolation cell from the cops and government employees who keep assuring me ‘they are only here to help.'”
Welch raised concern with officials when it became apparent he did not want his daughter to receive vaccinations. “It didn’t seem smart that you would be saving people who weren’t the fittest,” he said in another of his rambling videos. “If evolution believes in survival of the fittest, why are we vaccinating everybody? Shouldn’t we just let the weak die off and let the strong survive?”
Alongside reading out the charges lodged against the couple, Judge Smolenski also denied Fusari’s request for a personal release bond so she could continue working at a Cedar Springs McDonalds. Smolenski also ordered the couple to have no contact with their other children, who are currently staying with their grandparents.
The couple is due back in court Aug. 20.