A US mother “obsessed” with maintaining a vegan diet has been arrested after allegedly feeding her baby nothing but nuts and berries.
Elizabeth Hawk, 33, was charged on October 4 with child endangerment after her estranged husband, Jerry Hawk, 44, tipped off authorities when her 11-month-old son became seriously malnourished.
He told a Pennsylvanian court that his wife had “become obsessed” with veganism and was restricting the baby to a diet of consisting only of nuts and small amounts of fruit, according to PEOPLE.
The baby had developed a rash that “became so bad that the child was scratching [his] skin off in places,” he said, but which Elizabeth was refusing to treat, despite having been prescribed a topical cream.
The child also appeared to have delayed motor skills and physical deterioration, which the father attributed to the diet.
A paediatrician who examined the child described her alleged neglect as “inhumane” because of the level of discomfort the rash had caused, while also putting him at risk of “septic shock”, court documents stated.
The baby also “cannot crawl as a result of the malnourishment,” and is developmentally delayed.
The child’s aunt, Brandy Hawk, also confirmed the rash to local TV station KDKA-TV describing her sister-in-law’s nutrition as extreme.
“She was going to live on water and sunlight,” she said.
The boy is now in the care of his father, along with his two older siblings.
According to Hawk the child is “doing great,” and has “completely turned around.”
* Featured image via KDKA-TV and iStock.