In 2012, a 19 month old boy named Ezekiel Stephan died of bacterial meningitis because his parents believe in quackery over medicine. They were convicted, but a new trial ordered by the Supreme Court has now acquitted them in a truly horrific ruling.
Alberta Justice Terry Clackson has come under fire for racist language in his ruling acquitting David and Collet Stephan in the death of their child. Is the criticism deserved? Yes. His ruling was horrible on other grounds, but he added racism to the mix.
Ezekiel Stephan was a toddler who died tragically in 2012 because his parents did not treat his bacterial meningitis with medicine, but rather with quackery. His parents were convicted, then acquitted on appeal. A week ago, his father attacked the Canadian Medical Association for reporting on a petition doctors sent to the court urging that courts overturn the acquittal.
On September 19, in a retrial ordered by the Supreme Court of Canada, Alberta Justice Terry Clackson issued a ruling acquitting David and Collet Stephan of failing to provide the necessities of life to their son Ezekiel, whose bacterial meningitis they had chosen to treat with quackery instead of medicine, leading to his death in 2012. The news reports showed that this was a very bad decision, but you have to read Justice Clackson’s actual decision to see that it’s an even worse decision than the news reports indicate, full of bad medicine, bad science, and even a hint of racism.
Good news in the case of Ezekiel Stephan! The Crown has decided to appeal the acquittal of David and Collet Stephan.