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Maine woman dies, was charged with burning son

June 4, 2014

THORNDIKE, Maine (AP) — Authorities say a Maine mother charged with deliberately burning her 6-year-old son’s hand on a wood stove as punishment has died.

Michele Dunworth of Thorndike had pleaded not guilty to charges of endangering the welfare of a child and domestic violence assault and was awaiting trial.

Waldo County District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau tells the Morning Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1l5j8HS) the 30-year-old Dunworth died on May 11. Rushlau said she died of natural causes. A phone message seeking further comment from Rushlau on Wednesday wasn’t immediately returned.

Police say the boy had accidentally pushed his 7-year-old sister against the stove while they were playing in January, prompting the punishment. Dunworth said the burns were accidental.

The case has been dismissed.

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Information from: Morning Sentinel, http://www.onlinesentinel.com/

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