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Parents discover that their 3-week-old baby died of starvation while they were eating at restaurant

By Mason White 4:31 AM January 1, 2015
Ruby and Roy Stephens 

By: Tanya Malhotra
(Scroll down for video) A baby died of starvation while her parents dined at a restaurant.

The baby girl, 22-day-old Betsey Kee Stephens, died a slow and painful death as she had been starved for a few days.

Her parents, Ruby Stephens, 23, and Roy Stephens, 48, were arrested for murder. According to police, the couple drove from Indiana to Florida, and failed to feed the baby.

As soon as they arrived in Florida, the couple went to their hotel and noticed the baby’s feet were cold. They covered her with a blanket.

The couple then went to the Golden Corral restaurant to meet and spend time with family members. When Ruby Stephens checked on her baby she noticed that her feet were cold and the baby was unresponsive. Betsey Kee Stephens was taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Her parents have been charged with first-degree murder, Lakeland Police said on Tuesday. The couple is accused of neglecting the baby, causing her to suffer a painful death.

An autopsy showed that the baby had been dead for more than three hours, before the parents sought help. The baby weighed only 4 pounds at the time of her death. She lost about 2 pounds since her birth. The normal weight for a baby her age is 8 pounds, the medical examiner’s office said.

Police said that the couple were traveling with their 1-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter. Both appeared healthy. The Lakeland Police Department said that both children are now with the Department of Children and Families.

Police said that Roy Stephens was not the biological father of the baby. Ruby Stephens told authorities that Roy did not pay attention to the baby since her birth.

She also said that the issue with the baby not being his caused a lot of stress in their marriage.

Police are still investigating the incident. If found guilty, the parents face life in prison.