It was a trip from which young Louie was supposed not to return. On this February 28, 2019, on the national road which takes the 9-year-old boy at the end of his life to the county hospital for palliative care, the entire community of Little Rock in Arkansas salutes his exemplary courage one last time, while a hundred officers, representing dozens of Arkansas state agencies, form a guard of honor on the road whose traffic has been interrupted for the occasion.

An impressive procession of around forty cars (ambulances, firefighters, police, etc.) follows the one that transports the child and his mother, Kristy Schneider, to the hospital. A neighbor of Louie’s organized the parade in his honour: “Earlier this week he asked me if I would take him to the hospital, said the man who wished to remain anonymous. .He knew exactly why he was going to the hospital…” Little Rock Police tweeted that “the boy’s strength and courage is an example to all of us.”

Developmental delay, strokes, heart problems: doctors face an unprecedented case

For two years, according to his mother, Louie Schneider had been fighting a rare and incurable disease due to an abnormality in his chromosomes, which would cause developmental delay, strokes and heart problems. Even the doctors remain distraught in the face of this unprecedented case. The child, in a wheelchair, fed by tube, is exhausted. Louie is, in spite of himself, the most famous sick child in the region.

At the microphone of the media waiting for them, Kristy confides: “On our way to the hospital for the last time, I had no idea that the streets would be lined with people paying tribute to my son, who they would greet and wave. flags. That there would be police motorcycles stopping traffic, a fire truck with the ladder out and all these people saluting and honoring my son,” she said with tears in her eyes, her voice elated.

Every hope for the little boy’s recovery ends in failure

Everyone salutes the dedication of his adoptive parents, Kristy and Erik, who have been scrambling to find treatment for Louie since he fell ill in 2017 during breakfast. His mother is on all fronts, accompanying her child in all medical consultations. Louie was hospitalized six times in 2018 for a total of three months. Every hope for a cure ends in failure. On Facebook, Kristy regularly posts news of her son, publicly speaking about his suffering, prompting doctors to prescribe powerful narcotics, including morphine and fentanyl (another opioid). Despite everything, Louie relapses tirelessly.

Over the months, her fight moved many people in the town of Alexander, where the family lives, and in Little Rock County. Tombola, call for donations, support from associations: many people are mobilizing to help them. Neighboring Louie, the Baker family even launched a fundraiser via PayPal which raised $10,395 (€8,825). The generosity is undeniable, the Schneider family received $31,895 (€27,080) in donations and gifts for their son.

At the bend of a corridor, a murderous sentence from Kristy will bring down the mask

Now, over the weeks of hospitalization, Louie’s state of health improves. A miracle that should have delighted his parents. But at the bend of a corridor, a murderous sentence from Kristy will bring down the mask: “He missed his death!” Shocked, the caregivers report the strange behavior of this disturbing mother. Louie is transferred to a clinic from May 28 to June 14 where experts give him a battery of tests which reveal that “Ms. Schneider describes aches and pains in Louie that do not exist clinically”. On July 20, the alert that Kristy caused her son’s illness by administering powerful drugs to him reaches social services.

End of the macabre comedy. Placed in a foster family, Louie is doing better. The investigation also made it possible to diagnose a syndrome of Münchhausen by proxy at Kristy Schneider. This disorder, described by the British pediatrician Samuel Roy Meadow, in 1977, is characterized by the need for a parent to exaggerate, invent or provoke an illness in the child, in order to attract attention. As soon as he is no longer under the yoke of his abusive mother, the young boy can eat and walk again. Since then, Louie, whose custody the Schneiders lost, has been doing well. At her trial, Kristy pleaded guilty. On August 4, 2021, the court sentenced her to a four-year suspended prison sentence and a care order. This time for a real pathology.

Kristy Schneider © DOC THV11.COM

Lara T.
Lara T.

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