Ohio Mom Sentenced For Feeding Diabetic Child Soda

The Ohio mother whose 4-year-old diabetic daughter died after she fed her mostly soda was sentenced on May 24 to a minimum of nine years in prison.

Tamara Banks, 41, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in March. According to prosecutors, 4-year-old Karmity Hoeb’s diet of Mountain Dew caused her to suffer diabetic ketoacidosis, a life-threatening complication of Type 1 diabetes, resulting in her death on January 25, 2022.

Prosecutors accused Banks of abuse and neglect by denying her child proper medical care and nutrition for the majority of her life. Just days before Karmity died, the child showed signs of a “serious medical issue,” according to prosecutors. Despite the symptoms worsening by the day, Banks waited until the child had stopped breathing before calling 911.

Paramedics briefly revived Karmity before she was transported to the hospital. However, scans revealed that the child was brain dead.

An autopsy later found that Karmity’s death was caused by a brain injury from undiagnosed diabetes.

According to Clermont County Assistant Prosecutor Clay Tharp, Karmity’s death could have been prevented if her parents had provided her with proper medical treatment and care.

The steady diet of carbonated sugary drinks fed through a baby bottle also caused Karmmity’s teeth to dissolve.

According to prosecutors, Banks mixed Mountain Dew with baby formula long after the child should have been weaned and placed on solid food. Investigators found no evidence that the 4-year-old had ever visited a dentist.

The investigation also revealed that Banks’ other children, now grown, were also neglected in her care, including another child who at four fell into a coma from undiagnosed diabetes.

In sentencing Banks, Judge Victor Haddad said she should have known the dangers of undiagnosed diabetes given her older child’s previous coma.

Banks was indicted last summer along with Karmity’s father Christopher Hoeb, 53, who also pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and is scheduled for sentencing on June 11.