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Penn. couple face death penalty in child’s torture death

PHILADELPHIA — Prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty against a Philadelphia-area couple charged in the torture death of the woman’s 3-year-old son.

Officials say Jillian Tait and Gary Lee Fellenbaum III went shopping and ate pizza as the boy lay dying after weeks of escalating abuse.

They have been formally charged Wednesday with murder, child abuse, conspiracy and other crimes during their video arraignment from a Chester County prison.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the couple did not speak at the brief hearing. They have pleaded not guilty to the charges and earlier waived a preliminary hearing.

Authorities say Scott McMillan was hung upside and beaten with a frying pan before his Nov. 4 death in the family’s mobile home in Coatesville. They say his 6-year-old brother was also abused.

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