Wyoming couple pleads guilty in child’s dehydration death

Posted at 2:50 PM, Oct 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-07 14:51:54-04

WYOMING, Mich. — The parents of a 1-year-old boy who died of dehydration have pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree murder and child abuse.

Alexander Birkenmeyer and Andrea Todd were accused of neglecting their son Yurik until he died in March 2018.

Yurik weighed 22 pounds when he was found dead at the couple’s Wyoming home. He had been removed from their home by Child Protective services in January 2017 after other people shared concerns for the child, but he was returned to their care that fall.

Court records show the couple had another child die in March 2015 because of unsafe sleeping conditions. Their daughter died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome from sleeping next to one of her parents.

Birkenmeyer is facing a 20-year minimum sentence for the murder charge. Todd’s minimum sentence is set at 16 years in prison, but the judge can choose anything up to the maximum.

Both are scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 31.