Horrific images emerged on Saturday showing the lifeless body of a 16-year-old girl who was starved to death by her adoptive mother.
The graphic pictures show the girl’s frail body covered in blood with scratches and marks.
There is also a photograph of the desperate handwritten note written by one of the five Children under the care of Nicole Finn, the 43-year-old Iowa woman who received three life sentences for starving her adopted daughter, Natalie, 16, to death.
‘Can’t open window, mom nailed it shut!’ the note reads.
The consecutive sentences were handed down on Friday to Nicole .
She was found guilty last month of first-degree murder of Natalie and three counts of kidnapping for confining Natalie’s siblings.
Finn said after Friday’s hearing that she intends to appeal the verdict but made no other comment after hearing the sentences.
Natalie weighed only 85lbs when she died in October 2016, authorities have said.
The teen was found lying on a linoleum floor of their cat-filled home wearing an adult diaper. Her body was covered in bed sore and had almost no fat or muscle left, reported the Des Moines Register.
Experts testified that her siblings, Mikayla, 14, and Jaden, 15, were at risk of starving to death as well and spent months recovering after Natalie suffered cardiac arrest.
Mikayla testified in court that she had resorted to drinking from a toilet because she was so thirsty.
Judge Karen Romano called Finn’s actions inexcusable and ordered her to not have any contact with her surviving adopted children.
‘The court cannot imagine what kind of mental trauma these children have suffered,’ Romano said.
Finn’s ex-husband, Joe Finn II, has pleaded not guilty to kidnapping, neglect or abandonment and child endangerment.
He wasn’t living with the rest of the family when Natalie died. His trial is scheduled to begin April 30.
During trial, prosecutors described Nicole as more concerned about her cats, kittens and dogs than her children.
The mother-of-five kept three of her children locked in a filthy bedroom without furniture and didn’t allow them regular access to food or a bathroom for months.
The children would at times climb out a window of their home and beg for food from neighbors, prompting Nicole and Joseph to board up the windows.
Neighbors and school officials reported their concerns about Natalie’s treatment to state child welfare authorities.
After obtaining a court order and visiting the home, the officials declined to remove the girl or her siblings. A child protective worker was later fired amid inquiries by the Department of Human Services, legislators and the Iowa Office of Ombudsman.
In final arguments, the defense said Nicole was detached from reality and overwhelmed by her parenting duties.
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