The case of an Iowa girl who was abused and killed a year ago has inspired legislation in a neighboring state. The bill proposed in the South Dakota Senate would have allowed felony charges to be filed against a person who knows a child is being abused but doesn’t do anything about it — if the child later suffers serious injuries. The measure was defeated Tuesday on an 18-to-15 vote. The South Dakota bill was drafted after the death 13 months ago of two-year-old Shelby Duis in Spirit Lake. Shelby’s mother, Heidi Watkins, was sentenced to up to 50 years in prison for child endangerment. Watkins’ former live-in boyfriend, Jesse Wendelsdorf, also went to trial and was acquitted of murder and sexual abuse charges.
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