Mom Arrested for Trying to Suffocate Baby in Hospital

A 19-year-old mother is being charged in the attempted murder of her 5-month-old son. Hospital surveillance camera footage reportedly showed the young mom covering her baby's nose and mouth until monitors began beeping and flashing warnings. The baby turned blue. Luckily, this little tyke, who was in the hospital being watched for signs of epilepsy, survived. The same can't be said for another baby of Cynthia Kaye Wood. That child reportedly died of complications due to epilepsy and seizures. But given what surveillance camera footage saw, that death is now drawing scrutiny.

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Wood's 5-month-old son, known only as "KW" in Houston court documents, was being monitored at a hospital for signs of seizures and epilepsy and trouble breathing.

That's when cameras picked up Wood allegedly trying to block his breathing passages. It also reportedly shows her putting a blanket over the baby's head. Hospital staff called the video "horrific."

In fact, that was allegedly the second time that day she had tried to harm her child and monitors had gone off. That time, the lights were off, but cameras still caught Wood with her hands in the crib during the time the baby's breathing became labored.

It's amazing "KW" survived this alleged second attempt on his life. When nurses found him slumped in his mom's arms, he was reportedly dead. However, doctors were able to revive him.

During an investigation, authorities found that Wood had four children from different fathers. "KW" as well as a 5-year-old girl have been put into protective custody. Another child had been put up for adoption earlier. The last child died under what is now considered to be suspect circumstances.

While we don't know what is going on with Wood, this pattern sounds similar to Munchausen by proxy syndrome, in which a caretaker will often cause harm to a child on purpose in order to draw sympathy and attention. Often the perpetrator continues the abuse on more than one victim. Sometimes this pattern isn't discovered until at least one victim has died.

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But regardless of the motive, this is a horrific thing for any child to have to endure. Thank goodness this mother was allegedly caught on camera, or how much longer would this have gone on? And with what terrible result?

Prosecutors say they will continue investigating the death of the first baby. As for "KW," he is in safe hands now.

What do you think could cause a mother to harm her own baby? Does a person like that need prison or mental help -- or both?

 

Image via Houston Police Dept.

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