Little Girl Dies From Severe Untreated Head Lice Infestation

3 min read
Little Girl Dies From Severe Untreated Head Lice Infestation

12 Year Old Kaitlyn Yozviak from Macon in Georgia died after she developed anaemia caused by a severe head lice infestation left untreated for years.

The little girl suffered a fatal heart-attack caused by the anaemia.  Her parents, Mary Katherine Horton, 37, and Joey Yozviak, 38 have been charged with second-degree murder and child cruelty over Kaitlyn’s death.

The repeated lice bites had severely lowered the little girl’s iron levels, which caused the anaemia, and in turn triggered the cardiac arrest which caused her death.

Mary Katherine Horton had made a 911 call to authorities at 2pm on the 26th August stating that her child was unresponsive.  Kaitlyn was transported to the Navicent Medical Center in Baldwin Country but was pronounced dead on arrival. Her parents were taken into custody shortly afterwards.

John Yozviak, Katie Horton Charged in Kaitlyn Yozviak's Murder | Law & Crime

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said that Kaitlyn’s headlice was the worst case they had ever seen.  It is believed the little girl had not been bathed for a week before her death.  Her room was filthy and contained vermin including her mattress and toys.   Experts say that the condition in which Kaitlyn was found would have left her living in constant agony. Neighbours reported that they had not seen Kaitlyn in the two months before her death.

GBI Special Agent Ryan Hilton told the Judge that:

‘Kaitlyn had the most severe lice infestation at the time of her death that the GBI’s office had ever seen, and it may have lasted on and off for at least three years.’

Girl's death is linked to 'most severe lice infestation officials had ever seen' | Daily Mail Online

The parents had an extensive history with the Department of Family and Children’s Services.  Reported for the condition of their home due to an excessive number of cats and vermin infestation.  Previous to Kaitlyn’s death, her two older brothers were removed from the home and put into the care of their Maternal Grandmother, Anna Horton.  Anna told authorities that:

“Had the system done their job and rescued Kaitlyn, I would have raised her.”

Kaitlyn was temporarily rehomed with her Aunt for a period of six days but had returned to live with her parents.

Kaitlyn was originally to be given up for adoption at birth when social services saw the appalling condition of her parent’s home, however, they ultimately decided to raise her themselves.  The coupled moved constantly to avoid the notice of the authorities.

Katie Horton, John Yozviak Charged For Kaitlyn Yozviak's Death | Crime News

No date has yet been set for Kaitlyn’s funeral however a local funeral home, Fair Haven is paying for the service.

The couple is currently awaiting sentencing.


Horrifically, the parents of little Kaitlyn have made bail after they were both charged with child cruelty and second-degree murder.  There was a $100,000 bail set.

The District Attorney Brent Cochran noted that he is still awaiting the final autopsy results from medical tests done on Kaitlyn.


About Author

Jody Allen

Jody is the founder and essence of Stay at Home Mum. An insatiable appetite for reading from a very young age had Jody harbouring dreams of being a pu...Read Moreblished author since primary school. That deep-seeded need to write found its way to the public eye in 2011 with the launch of SAHM. Fast forward 4 years and a few thousand articles Jody has fulfilled her dream of being published in print. With the 2014 launch of Once a Month Cooking and 2015's Live Well on Less, thanks to Penguin Random House, Jody shows no signs of slowing down. The master of true native content, Jody lives and experiences first hand every word of advertorial she pens. Mum to two magnificent boys and wife to her beloved Brendan; Jody's voice is a sure fire winner when you need to talk to Mums. Read Less

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