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Father gets life in prison after infant with Down syndrome starved to death

Filiberto Garcia-Campos in 2014 at the time of his arrest.
Filiberto Garcia-Campos in 2014 at the time of his arrest. Lexington County Sheriff's Department

A father was sentenced to life in prison Friday in the 2013 death of his 13-month-old daughter who was starved to death, the 11th Circuit Solicitor’s Office announced.

Filiberto Garcia-Campos was convicted of homicide by child abuse in the death of Madison Garcia, who was born with Down syndrome. Madison weighed only 9 pounds and 2 ounces at the time of her death – less than half the average weight of 21 pounds expected for a toddler girl.

A pathologist who examined her body said she had been starved to death; her body showed many features of chronic starvation. Her ribs and backbone stuck out, she had pressure sores and no fat on her bones.

Madison’s mother, Tracy Roach, pleaded guilty in April to homicide by child abuse and is serving a life sentence at the Graham Correctional Institution in Columbia.

Warrants in the case allege that between July 31, 2012, and Sept. 2, 2013, Garcia and Roach, who lived in West Columbia, caused the girl’s death by “extreme indifference to human life through lethal conduct.”

The child had not been fed or checked on for nine hours before Garcia found her in her crib and brought her, unresponsive, to the Lexington Medical Center on Sept. 2, 2013, according to law enforcement officials.

The child died from chronic malnutrition and dehydration, case records show.

Despite a monthly check from Social Security, $500 in food stamps and eligibility for WIC assistance from the state, “there’s little indication that such assistance was spent toward Madison’s health or well-being,” the 11th Circuit Solicitor’s office said in a news release following Garcia-Campos’ conviction.