Man accused in child’s neglect death says charges unfair

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — The parents of a 10-month-old Michigan girl who died of malnutrition and dehydration didn’t seek medical help because it’s “just as dangerous as not going,” the father said.

Seth Welch and Tatiana Fusari were charged Monday with felony murder and first-degree child abuse after their daughter, Mary, was found unresponsive in their Solon Township home. An autopsy determined the cause of death as malnutrition and dehydration due to neglect by adult caregivers.

Welch told WOOD-TV that he didn’t know Mary was ill, despite an affidavit saying the 27-year-olds admitted she had been underweight for a month. He said his daughter’s autopsy was conducted “lazily” and that he believes something else caused Mary’s death.

“I believe I am being unfairly charged, being made an example of for my very strong faith,” Welch said.