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Mother who poisoned son jailed for life

A woman who slowly poisoned her young son with a deadly cocktail of prescribed drugs has been jailed for life.

Orange Today (UK)
January 13, 2003

Michelle Dickinson /PA

Michelle Dickinson, a Munchausen by Proxy sufferer, first claimed her son Michael had epilepsy when he was three years old, duping doctors into over-prescribing his medication, Liverpool Crown Court heard.

Last year the 31-year-old, from Seascale, west Cumbria, was convicted of attempting to murder Michael after interfering with his feeding tube as he was rushed to hospital in an ambulance.

She was also convicted of four charges of cruelty against her son, who died in October 2000 in a Leicester Hospital at the age of seven having spent his final months on a life-support machine.

High Court judge Mr Justice Pitchers told Dickinson she would serve at least eight years and four months in jail before being considered for parole.

He said it was clear she had deliberately lied to GPs in order to obtain drugs her son did not need using "dishonesty and subterfuge" to increase the doses.

The court heard how single mother Dickinson suffered from Munchausen by Proxy syndrome - an attention-seeking disorder which drives sufferers to harm others.

Story filed: 13:43 Monday 13th January 2003


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