Minnesota couple accused of starving adopted son

Associated Press Modified: November 5, 2012 at 7:16 pm •  Published: November 5, 2012
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Mona Hauer told authorities she and her husband slept outside the boy's bedroom for up to a year so he would not steal food. Then they moved his room to the basement and put an alarm on his door, the complaint said.

The boy said he was given a bucket to go to the bathroom at night, and had to clean it himself in the morning. One of the other children was responsible for hosing him off two to three times a week with a garden hose, the complaint said.

The other children told authorities the boy was "naughty" and stole food, according to the complaint said.

At the time of the boy's adoption, a doctor found he had experienced trauma that would require intensive psychotherapy. The doctor gave several recommendations, but the Hauers did not follow through, the complaint said.

Mona Hauer, who home schools all the children, told authorities the family practices what she called "holistic medicine" and only goes to doctors in serious situations. She told authorities she put the boy on a liquid diet after talking with a chiropractor, according to the complaint.

The chiropractor told authorities he hoped the liquid meal would be digested before the boy could regurgitate it, but that he did not intend it to be the boy's only nourishment.

The complaint said Mona Hauer told authorities the boy's eating habits were his "attempt to be in control of the home and that (he) had in fact controlled the home for some time." She also said she didn't think he was too thin.

Russell Hauer told medical staff that he and his wife withheld food from the boy at least once as a form of punishment, the complaint said. He also told officials the boy "had won or gotten his way" when he was taken to the hospital.

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