One of two parents charged in the starvation death of their 1-year-old daughter has avoided a potential death penalty trial with a guilty plea. Christian Miguel Bishop-Torrence, the father of 1-year-old Georgia Bishop-Torrence, was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years following the plea to murder — but not capital murder.
When the Wichita Falls, Texas, case first arose in June 2021, cops said that the baby was brought to United Regional Health Care System and died on June 11. The ensuing investigation led to capital murder indictments several months later against both Christian Bishop-Torrence and his wife Sage Angel Rose Wright, who were 24 and 22 respectively when they were arrested. Bishop-Torrence, now 26, won’t be able to get out of prison — at the earliest — until he’s in his fifties.
It was alleged that the parents noticed their baby had been losing weight for months but didn’t get the helpless infant the medical aid and nourishment she so desperately needed, resulting in her death.
Intending to get fast food, Bishop-Torrence allegedly checked on the baby before heading out with a friend. After realizing the baby girl was gasping for air, breathing slow and shallow breaths, and making a rattle noise as she exhaled, the father took the victim to the hospital at 11:23 p.m. on June 11, 2021 in that friend’s car. Baby Georgia was pronounced dead at the hospital approximately 20 minutes later.
Forensic examiner Dr. Suzanne Dakil of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center determined that it was “highly unlikely” that a “genetic or metabolic problem” caused the baby’s weight loss. Instead, the reportedly “severely malnourished” infant with sores visible on her body had starved to death.
The starvation revelation was made all the more shocking after jail records listed Bishop-Torrence at 375 pounds and Wright at 381 pounds. Georgia weighed just 8 pounds and 8 ounces when she died, well below what she should have weighed and less than what she weighed at birth. A doctor reportedly said that she should have weighed 22 to 24 pounds, Wichita Falls Times Record News reported.
Longtime Wichita County District Attorney John Gillespie told the Times Record News he couldn’t immediately recall another case where a defendant pleaded guilty to an offense resulting in life in prison, but he did say the guilty plea in the “horrific” case would save taxpayers the burden of a capital trial.
Wichita County jail records reviewed by Law&Crime show that Wright’s capital case is still pending and that she remains behind bars on a total $1.6 million bond. She also faces charges of child endangerment and injury to a child.
After her arrest, Wright allegedly told investigators that she did not bond with baby Georgia like she did with her two other kids.
Alberto Luperon contributed this report.
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]