Hearing in southeast Missouri boy's death rescheduled

Wednesday, November 19, 2008 | 4:20 p.m. CST

CAPE GIRARDEAU — A plea hearing for the mother and stepfather of a 4-year-old southeast Missouri boy who died from an infection in 2005 is rescheduled to Dec. 1.

The Southeast Missourian newspaper says Emily Altom and Michael Altom were scheduled to plead guilty on Friday to three counts of felony child endangerment. But defense attorney Allen Moss says the hearing was delayed due to a scheduling conflict for the judge.

Voluntary manslaughter charges alleging the couple was medically negligent in the death of Ethan Patrick Williams will be dropped. Ethan was treated for 25 days at a hospital before dying on Aug. 25, 2005. He suffered from a virulent bacteria that invaded his leg bone, blood and lungs.

Authorities cited filth at the couple's rural Perry County mobile home as the reason for filing charges.

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