Postpartum: Mother Attempts to Smother 5 Week Old Baby

Paragraph six reads:  “Prosecutor Peter Gower QC said about two weeks after the baby was born its mother was diagnosed with postnatal depression, and was prescribed anti-depressants. In the past she had taken overdoses, suffered from panic attacks and had self-harmed, said Mr Gower.”

http://www.thisiskent.co.uk/sevenoaks/Young-mum-denies-trying-murder-baby/article-2318537-detail/article.html

Young mum denies trying to murder her own baby

A TEENAGE mum is on trial for attempting to murder her baby with a pillow as it lay in its cot.

The 18-year-old, from Sevenoaks, was reported to police by her own mother. She was suffering with postnatal depression, Maidstone Crown Court heard on Tuesday.

The mother – who cannot be named for legal reasons – pleaded not guilty to attempted murder and says that she had not intended to harm her five-week-old baby.

The baby is now less than two and has made a full recovery.

The jury heard the incident happened in early 2009, at the baby’s grandmother’s house. The child’s grandmother managed to revive the infant by giving it the kiss of life, the court heard.

Prosecutor Peter Gower QC said about two weeks after the baby was born its mother was diagnosed with postnatal depression, and was prescribed anti-depressants. In the past she had taken overdoses, suffered from panic attacks and had self-harmed, said Mr Gower.

He said that on the evening of the incident the child started crying while its mother was playing on her PlayStation. At about 8.15pm, the mother called the grandmother, and came downstairs with her baby in her arms.

Mr Gower said: “The baby was unresponsive, not breathing, pale in the face and had blue shading around his lips and nose.

“Its grandmother could not hear (the child) breathing or detect any movement of (the baby’s) chest and began giving (the child) mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.”

He added emergency services were called and the baby began breathing again. A paediatrician sent the child home from hospital the following day.

Mr Gower also said that, when the grandmother questioned her daughter about what happened she became defensive and tearful and was unable to bond with her baby.

“She said she was really sorry and that she had put a pillow over (the child’s) face,” said Mr Gower.

The grandmother called the police, but, when arrested, the teenage mother denied saying she had put a pillow on the baby’s face. She claimed she put the pillow on its stomach because it smelt of her and had not put it on its face. In a later statement she said she had not hurt the child, or tried to hurt it, in any way.

Mr Gower added: “If the reality of this case is this woman put a pillow over her baby’s face intending to stop it breathing and intending to end its life, she is guilty of attempted murder.”

The hearing continues.

At the time of press, the Chronicle was challenging the reporting restrictions imposed by the court