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Couple arrested for abusing, starving autistic son

David Lawrence Hall and Vanessa Hall are accused of starving and abusing their special needs son. (Photo: City of Longmont)

David Lawrence Hall and Vanessa Hall are accused of starving and abusing their special needs son. (Photo: City of Longmont)

LONGMONT, Colo. — Two parents have been arrested, accused of abusing and neglecting their 17-year-old blind, autistic son, the Longmont Police Department said.

David Lawrence Hall and Vanessa Hall are charged with child abuse and negligent serious bodily injury to an at-risk person. The couple’s son weighed just 88 pounds when he was admitted to Children’s Hospital Colorado in Aurora.

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He was diagnosed with hypovolemic shock, a condition of extreme fluid loss that might result in heart failure, according to court documents.

The teenager was also suffering acute renal failure, severe malnutrition and an extreme pressure ulcer.

The couple initially brought their son to Longmont United Hospital after he lost consciousness. His father believed it was because the teen was suffering from the flu.

The teenager had not seen a doctor in at least eight years. He hasn’t had formal schooling, dental care or in-home assistance for the same time period.

Vanessa Hall claims her son son is a “picky eater” and will only drink seven or eight sodas a day, and eat cheesy snacks such as Cheetos or Doritos.

His parents allegedly forced the teen to use a jug as a toilet.

A doctor involved with the case described the teen’s physical condition as being consistent with someone who had lived in a concentration camp for several years.

The doctor estimates it will take a minimum of four weeks of intensive medical care before the teen can be considered in a condition that isn’t life threatening.