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Thursday 17 January 2019
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Tragic death of 13-year-old’s baby

AN AUTOPSY on a fivemonth- old baby girl, born to a 13-year-old, yesterday revealed death was due to positional asphyxia .

The baby, named Leah died at her Brazil Village, San Raphael home between 2.30 am and 7 am on Thursday .

The baby’s mother fed her at 2.30 am and placed the infant on her back on a bed. When the baby’s mother awoke at 7 am, she realised Leah was cold and unresponsive .

The baby was rushed to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex where she was pronounced dead .

Investigations revealed the child was placed between its mother and six-year-old aunt. The aunt, while asleep, placed her leg over the child’s face causing Leah to smother to death .

Yesterday at the Forensic Science Centre in St James, before the autopsy was carried out, pathologist Dr Valeri Alexandrov used a doll to demonstrate to the 13-year-old mother how her baby was positioned on the bed when she died. Yesterday, the father of the 13-year-old said that when his wife died in 2015, his daughter who was a student at a high school in East Trinidad became depressed and began communicating with a 16-year-old boy on Facebook .

He said that unknown to him, his daughter struck up a secret relationship with the boy with baby Leah being the result. The boy, on learning that he was to be a father, ended all communication with the 13-year-old and disappeared. The man said he made numerous attempts to locate the teenaged boy and even contacted the Child Protection Unit .

According to the teen’s father, as the family is devout Catholics a decision was made not to abort the baby. He added that although it was a trying time for him and his daughter the baby was born healthy and everyone loved her dearly. He said that he never expected to have another death in his family so soon after his wife’s and added that Leah will be greatly missed .

He pointed out that his daughter is coping very well because she is a strong person, but he is of the view that she may require some form of counselling. On a positive note he said that his daughter will be returning to school in September to continue her studies because she is anxious to move on with her life and secure a sound education. Funeral arrangements for baby Leah are yet to be finalised

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