Louisiana Mom Pleads Guilty to Using Hand Sanitizer to Fatally Poison Son with Down Syndrome

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22-year-old Louisiana mother pleaded guilty to killing her 17-month-old son by injecting hand sanitizer into his feeding tube.

Erika Wigstrom received the maximum sentence after she pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the 2014 death of her son, Lucas Ruiz.

Lucas Ruiz was born with Down syndrome and an atrioventricular canal defect. He had surgery to repair the defect at a young age, but it required him to be fed through a feeding tube.

The mom reportedly described his death as a “mercy killing.”

The baby had a Blood Alcohol Level of .280, more than three times the state’s legal driving limit when he passed away.

His mother, Erika Wigstrom, was indicted on a first-degree murder charge only two months after Lucas’ death, as well as an attempted murder charge for trying to kill Lucas in October 2012 by giving him an alcohol-based perfume.

Lucas' father, Cesar Ruiz, was also arrested in connection with his son's death. While in police custody, he confessed to giving his son alcohol through his feeding tube in October 2012. Police later found he gave false information to defend Erica. He was found guilty of criminal mischief and spent a year in jail following his initial arrest. 

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