2006 Oct 2
4-year-old boy, in foster to adoption placement with Larry and Hannah Overton, was forced to drink a mixture of water and Cajun spices as punishment. The Overtons waited nearly three hours before taking the boy to an urgent care clinic as he vomited and drifted in and out of consciousness. When they arrived, Andrew was no longer breathing. A day later he died -- 4 months after his placement with the Overtons. Andrew Axel Burd died of hypernatremia or salt poisoning. Andrew consumed the equivalent of 23 teaspoons of Zatarain's Creole Seasoning or 6 teaspoons of pure salt. He also had head trauma as well as bruises and scratches.
Hannah Overton (nee Saenz) was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life; Larry Overton pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide and is on 5 years probation.
Mrs Overton and her church, Calvary Chapel of the Coastlands, continue to appeal her conviction in various ways. She maintains that Andrew ate the salt himself, however Andrew's former foster mother, who attended the same church testified she had not seen any pica or eating issues with Andrew during the 18 months he was in her home. (In an unusual coincidence, Hannah's father Bennie Saenz, a former Calvary Chapel pastor, was convicted of murder in 1985.) Overtons homeschooled their school age children. They had 4 bio children and Hannah was 6 months pregnant when Andrew died.
Hannah Overton was released from prison in December 2014. The case was dismissed in April 2015.