STAMFORD, Conn. – A man accused of repeatedly stabbing his mother was charged with murder Wednesday after prosecutors concluded the victim’s refusal to accept a blood transfusion was not a substantial factor in her death.
Stephen Ferenz, who suffers from bipolar disorder, was originally charged with two counts of first-degree assault. Authorities did not seek more serious charges until they could evaluate the victim’s decision to refuse a blood transfusion.
“He intentionally set in motion the chain of events,” prosecutor James Bernardi said. “That is not changed by anything that happened at the hospital.”
Ferenz, 42, is accused of stabbing his mother, Carol Ferenz, in the chest and arm with a household knife Dec. 31 in her home. She died a day later after refusing a blood transfusion on religious grounds because she was a Jehovah’s Witness.
Ferenz is being held on $1 million bond. A telephone message was left Wednesday for Susan Hankins, a public defender who was appointed to represent him.
Andrew Ferenz, the victim’s husband, opposed the murder charges. He said his son has been on medication for 25 years.