Katherine A. Mattern, a 23-year-old woman from Burien, Washington, is charged with second degree criminal mistreatment and domestic violence in the case of her 2-month-old son,who police say weighed barely 8 pounds when he was taken from her home. Doctors state that he would not have survived for much longer in her care.
Mattern recently moved to Washington from Oregon, where she was already under investigation for neglecting her 2-year-old daughter, Abigail Lilly. The investigation stemmed from the fact that Mattern and her daughter were living with a registered sex offender who was not supposed to have contact with children. It is not known if he is the father of her son.
Child Protective Services in Washington was first made aware of Mattern in February, when her daughter had scratches on her face. She then gave birth to her son on March 24th. At subsequent check ups, the boy’s weight kept dropping — going from the 50th percentile in mid-April, to the 32nd percentile at the end of April. On May 15th she took him to Children’s Hospital in Seattle for a check up, where he was found to weigh only 7.9 pounds — in the 3rd percentile — and was diagnosed with scabies, a skin rash caused by mites. Mattern said that her son had had the rash for at least two weeks. Her daughter, who had been living with family members, was examined as well and also found to have scabies.
Officials say that the home she had been living in with her children was “cluttered and unsanitary.”
Mattern, who was arrested Tuesday, could serve up to five years in prison if convicted. Her bail was set at $200,000. She is scheduled for arraignment on June 14th.
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