FORT WORTH (NBC News) — A judge on Thursday gave a hospital permission to take an 11-month-girl off life support against her family’s wishes in a closely-watched case that has drawn in the state’s attorney general and Texas Right to Life.
The family of Tinslee Lewis plans to appeal the ruling.
Tinslee’s mother, Trinity Lewis, said she was “heartbroken” by the judge’s decision. “The judge basically said Tinslee’s life is NOT worth living. I feel frustrated because anyone in that courtroom would want more time just like I do if Tinslee were their baby,” Lewis said in a statement released by Texas Right to Life, which represents the family.
“I hope that we can keep fighting through an appeal to protect Tinslee. She deserves the right to live,” the mother said.
Texas Right to Life slammed the ruling by a judge in the state’s 48th judicial district court as sentencing “an innocent 11-month-old” to death.
Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, where the child is on life support, released a statement saying the decision allows them “to make the most compassionate and medically appropriate decisions for Tinslee as she struggles in pain to survive each day.”
“Our medical judgment is that Tinslee should be allowed to pass naturally and peacefully rather than artificially kept alive by painful treatments,” the statement continued. “Even with the most extraordinary measures the medical team is taking, Tinslee continues to suffer.”
Tinslee was born prematurely in February with a rare heart defect. She hasn’t left the Cook Children’s Medical Center since birth.