CHICKASHA, OK (KFOR/CNN) - A mother of three in Oklahoma faces child abuse charges, according to the district attorney’s office, for allegedly depriving her son of water and other liquids by locking up his bedroom and the refrigerator.
Deonna Clanton, 27, is being held on a bail set at $150,000 after the mother allegedly confessed to investigators that she had been keeping her 3-year-old son away from liquids.
The boy was admitted to the hospital with signs of dehydration and failure to thrive, according to the affidavit. Medical records indicate he had hypernatremia or too much sodium in the blood, which made him excessively thirsty.
The 3-year-old was also malnourished and had bruises on his body, according to court documents.
Clanton allegedly admitted to locking her son’s bedroom door and the refrigerator to keep him out because he was always thirsty. She told investigators the boy’s nutritionist recommended he only drink 8 ounces of water per day, but the nutritionist said she would have never done so.
“You can’t deny a kid a drink. It just breaks my heart how bad that is,” said Sandy Dees, a former coworker of Clanton. “She didn’t let the kid have anything to drink, and I am very, very mad. It’s just amazing to me how stupid people are.”
Authorities said the child drank perfume during a home visit from a caseworker. Clanton told investigators he did it for attention.
Officials say the mother didn’t treat her other children in the same way and claim the boy was a target. He was removed from Clanton’s care and placed with a relative.