Couple charged after girl forced to drink 2 liters of soda

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soda suspects

(Photo: Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office)

HAWKINS COUNTY, Tenn. — A man and a woman accused of forcing their 5-year-old daughter to drink two liters of soda and water as a form of punishment appeared in court Friday.

Randall Lee Vaugh, 45, and his wife, Mary Lavonne Vaugh, 58, are charged with first-degree murder, aggravated child neglect and aggravated child abuse.

According to WJHL, the couple took their daughter, Alexa, to the emergency room when she became unresponsive in January 1 2012.  She died several days later.

According to an autopsy, Alexa’s death was because of “acute fluid/water intoxication.”

Investigators found she had been forced to drink the water and grape soda over a 1 to 2-hour period as punishment.

“She was allegedly force fed so much liquid that it caused the sodium level in her body to go down and her brain to swell, which eventually led to her becoming unconscious there in the home and go into a type of seizure. Ultimately – led to her death,” said said District Attorney Berkley Bell.

Bell said it took two years for the charges to be filled because of delays by the pathologist and the district attorney’s office.

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