Girl, 5, dies after allegedly forced to drink 2 liters of soda; parents charged

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TENNESSEE (Feb. 7, 2014)—A Tennessee father and stepmother have been charged in connection with the death of a 5-year-old girl, who police say was forced to drink two liters of grape soda as a form of punishment.

Randall and Mary Vaughn were charged with murder following a two-year investigation that was launched after 5-year-old Alexa Linboom was killed in January 2012. The couple is also charged with two counts of aggravated child neglect and aggravated child abuse.

Authorities say the couple forced the young girl to drink more than two liters of grape soda and water in less than two hours after the 5-year-old allegedly drank a sip of her stepmother’s drink.

An autopsy revealed Linboom died from acute fluid/water intoxication after suffering severe brain damage as a result of a massive intake of fluid.

The couple’s trial is reportedly set for Oct. 20.