Suppose a child in the United States dies from a medically treatable condition because her parents prayed over her but did not take her to a doctor. Will criminal charges be filed against the parents? In most cases, no. American prosecutors have found it difficult to obtain convictions in such cases because the laws in most states exempt parents from prosecution for child neglect, child abuse, and manslaughter if their religion mandates spiritual healing. The statute in Wisconsin is typical.
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