Trial of Park City woman accused of failing to give son needed medical care to begin Monday
The trial of a Park City woman accused of failing to give her son, who died in 2016, the medical care he required after a heart transplant finally begins Monday.
Jennifer Stroud, 41, faces felony charges of involuntary manslaughter and endangering the life of a child.
Charges against Stroud were filed in January 2017, but the trial, originally slated for March 2020, was delayed for several reasons, including the COVID-19 pandemic, Lake County state's attorney's office spokesman Steve Spagnolo said.
Many other trials have happened in the meantime, but Spagnolo did not comment further on the delay.
Jason Stroud, 11, was a sixth-grader at Woodland Middle School in Gurnee when he died on Sept. 11, 2016, four years after undergoing heart transplant surgery in Milwaukee.
Jennifer Stroud, then-husband David Stroud and Jason moved from Milwaukee to Park City in 2015. The couple were expected to take Jason to Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital in Chicago for regular visits. The parents also were tasked with giving Jason daily medication to prevent his body from rejecting the heart, authorities said.
When Jason missed several hospital appointments from December 2015 to August 2016, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services performed a well-being check, authorities said.
During the visit, Jason was taken to a hospital where doctors determined his body was rejecting the donor heart because he had not been taking the required medication, authorities said.
Talks between Jennifer Stroud's legal team and prosecutors to agree on a plea deal broke down in 2018.
David Stroud pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in May 2019 and was sentenced to five years in prison. As part of his sentence, David Stroud agreed to provide truthful testimony should the case against Jennifer Stroud go to trial.
David and Jennifer Stroud were co-defendants at one point, but the case was severed after the couple filed for divorce in July 2017. During previous hearings, attorneys said the Strouds planned to blame each other should the case go to trial.