Parents on trial for fatally starving daughter

GONZALES, Texas (AP) - Jury selection is under way in the South Texas trial of a couple accused of starving their 8-year-old adopted daughter to death.

Steve and Bettie Ramirez are charged in Gonzales County with murder in the 2007 death of their 45-pound daughter Crystal, who authorities say was bound to her bed, suffered from malnutrition and was beaten.

According to prosecutors, Crystal's 10-year-old sister says their parents stuffed tape in their mouths and sealed their jaws shut so they couldn't call their parents if they were thirsty or hungry.

The Ramirezes are also charged with injury to a child, unlawful restraint and endangering a child. They have both pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors say testimony could begin later this week.


Information from: The Victoria Advocate,

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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