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Howard mother to serve 15 years in prison for son’s neglect death

Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 5:12 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 7, 2021 at 10:33 PM CST
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HOWARD, Wis. (WBAY) - A woman who was found guilty of neglecting her son resulting in his death will serve time in prison.

Tuesday afternoon, Judge Thomas Walsh sentenced 26-year-old Sagal Hussein to 15 years in prison, and 10 years of supervision.

Hussein entered no contest pleas in mid-October to five counts - one count of Neglecting a Child (Consequence is Death), one count of Move/Hid/Bury Corpse of a Child, two counts of Neglecting a Child (Specified Harm Did Not Occur), and one count of Resisting or Obstructing an Officer.

During Tuesday’s sentencing, three other counts of Resisting and Obstructing an Officer were read in, but dismissed.

Hussein’s son, five-year-old Josias Marquez, was found in the trunk of her car. The state noted during the sentencing hearing the child died on January 9, 2020.

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As Action 2 News previously reported, the Brown County Sheriff’s Office was called to a home in Howard for a welfare check on two children who were alone outside. A deputy made contact with their mother, Sagal Hussein. The deputy contacted Child Protective Services.

CPS followed up and discovered Hussein had a third child who was not there. Investigators wanted to know where the child was. Sagal said the boy was living with his father in Michigan. A follow up with the boy’s father found that to be false.

Investigators learned that the boy hadn’t been in school for weeks. They were informed that the boy used a wheelchair and was dependent on others for feeding.

Officers executed a warrant to search Sagal Hussein’s home.

The Brown County Sheriff’s Office found Hussein’s vehicle parked at a friend’s home on Smith St. The vehicle was taken to the Wisconsin State Crime Lab. A search turned up decomposed remains of a child in a duffel bag, according to the complaint.

The Dane County Medical Examiner performed an autopsy on the boy. The doctor stated the boy was “significantly undernourished, mummified, had mold in places on his body, and that a long dark color hair was located on his left thigh.”

Based on decomposition, the medical examiner believed the boy had been dead for months before he was found in the trunk.

Investigators learned that the boy had been on seizure medications but Hussein had stopped giving them to him. Hussein claimed that the medications were not working and had side effects on the boy. Hussein stated the boy had cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Hussein stated she had been using CBD oil instead of medication for the seizures.

An investigator asked Hussein if the boy had a medical condition that may have caused him to die and if she tried to get rid of the boy’s body. The investigators stated Hussein showed no emotion during the conversation.

Investigators reviewed a phone call between Hussein and the child’s father in which Hussein said she “f--d up” and stated that an investigator wanted to know where her son was.

Medical records showed the family had missed multiple doctor’s appointments for the boy. Some were no-shows.

Records showed the boy had a “serious seizure history.” March 18, 2019, was the last known time that the boy’s seizure medication was refilled.

The state had recommended 10 years in prison, with seven years of supervision on count one, and five years of prison and three years of supervision on count 2, running consecutively to count 1. The state also asked for imprisonment time being concurrent for the other counts. The defense team asked for seven years in prison, seven years of supervision, and eligibility for help programs, and to receive credit for the 618 days served.

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