A Yonkers, NY woman was arrested and charged with murder, on Tuesday, after police found the lifeless body of her newborn baby girl she threw out the seventh-floor window of her boyfriend’s apartment.
The girl, who was found in an alleyway outside the apartment building on Monday, unconscious and unresponsive with her umbilical cord still attached, died of multiple blunt force injuries sustained in the fall, the New York City chief medical examiner, Dr. Barbara Sampson, said in a statement on Tuesday. The death was ruled a homicide, meaning that the infant was alive when she was thrown from the window.
The police said the mother, identified as Jennifer Berry of Yonkers, had been charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter. Ms. Berry, who briefly worked for New York City’s child welfare agency several years ago, was arraigned late Tuesday in Bronx Criminal Court, according to the Bronx district attorney’s office. Her case was adjourned until Oct. 5 and she was remanded to jail.
Ms. Berry, a police official said, apparently hid the final stage of her pregnancy from relatives and friends, including, it appears, her boyfriend. She told some of them that she had miscarried weeks ago. On Monday, she initially denied giving birth to the child but ultimately relented and admitted that she had delivered the baby, according to the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to disclose details of the investigation.
Shortly after 2:30 p.m. on Monday, the authorities were called to the Bronx apartment building, at 130 West 183rd Street, after the building superintendent’s wife found the baby while cleaning up the alleyway, the police said. The baby was declared dead at the scene, officials said.
On the winding street in the tree-lined University Heights neighborhood, many neighbors said on Tuesday that the episode remained fresh in their minds. They were struggling with what they saw and heard outside the white-brick apartment building the day before.
After the police arrived on Monday, Janiqua Torres, 33, went into the building’s stairwell, she said, where she could look into the area where the baby was found.
“I saw the blood,” said Ms. Torres, who has been staying with her husband’s family in the building. “It was a mess.”
“When I heard the police say ‘baby,’ ” she added, “that’s what crushed me.”
Her husband, Kenneth Bolton, 29, said he saw Ms. Berry being led out of the building by emergency workers and flanked by detectives. She looked “like she was lost,” Mr. Bolton said, adding, “You know how some people might have that look in their face where they don’t know where they’re at?”
Other mothers in the building said they were deeply shaken.
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