'Online' mom lets dogs
starve, neglects kids
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A British woman became so obsessed with an
online game that she let her three children live in squalor and even left
her two dogs to starve to death, a media report said.
The 33-year-old widow played the game almost non-stop on the Internet for
months while her children were reduced to eating cold baked beans straight
from tin with their fingers, the 'Daily Mail' reported.
Her home became filthy, with rubbish strewn over the floor and the bodies of
her two dogs, a German shepherd and a lurcher, left for two months in the
dining room, it said.
According to the British newspaper, a judge has now banned the widow from
using the Internet. She was sentenced to six months' imprisonment suspended
for two years, and ordered to do 75 hours of unpaid work as well.
In fact, the horror came to light when a neighbour peered through the
letterbox and alerted the authorities.
Police officers, who arrived at the house in Swanley, Kent, in February and
saw rubbish all over the floors in all of the rooms.
Prosecutor Deepak Kapur told the Maidstone Crown Court that the woman's
children, aged nine, ten and 13, were badly neglected for six months, and
they had been taken into care.
"She started playing initially for an hour a day in late 2009 but since
August of that year it had become an obsession to the point where she was
only getting two hours' sleep a night.
"She still managed to feed the children and get them to school but accepted
she let everything else go. Afterwards, it became so overwhelming she didn't
know where to start. It got to the stage where she only bought food that
didn't need cooking," the prosecutor was quoted as saying.