Mother charged with assault and fraud for exaggerating son's medical issues
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - An Austin, Texas mother is charged in Hamilton County, Ohio for allegedly exaggerating her son's medical issues, putting him at risk. Monika Burgett is charged with felonious assault, endangering children and telecommunications fraud.
According to the indictment, Burgett's son does have neurofibromatosis. Burgett took her 3-year-old son to Cincinnati Children's Hospital between April of 2015 and April 6, 2016. She allegedly told doctors her son had pain, wasn't able to feed and needed longer and higher doses of oxygen. Doctors say they eventually realized Burgett was lying about the symptoms, which led to unnecessary and excessive treatment. They also realized she had been going state to state to get her son treatment.
According to the indictment, her son received unnecessary doses of methadone, oxycodone and other medications. He also reportedly had unnecessary tubes for feeding and oxygen.
The charges against Burgett also claimed she started or participated in GoFundMe sites to raise money for her son's medical care. On those sites, she reportedly exaggerated his medical issues, including surgeries in which he faced death.
The indictment alleges she texted people and told them in person that he has cancer and received radiation and is suffering from a terminal illness. She's accused of shaving and cutting his hair and posting the pictures on the GoFundMe site. Prosecutors say he doesn't receive chemo and there's no medical reason for the hair loss.
The two GoFundMe pages have raised a total of $41,000. She's also accused of lying about being a doctor.
According to court papers, the boy is in foster care and doing very well. He's off all pain medication and is eating normally. He's using much less oxygen.
Burgett was indicted on May 4. On July 15, a psychiatric examination was ordered for Burgett, as part of her court case. She'll be back in court August 23 for that report. Burgett is jailed on $100,000 bond.