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Trinidad: Baby found in shallow grave

By News Day

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(NEWS DAY) — Residents of a Point Fortin village are in shock after the gruesome discovery of a newborn girl in a shallow grave yesterday. The child’s mother has been detained by police for questioning.

According to police, at around 8 am yesterday, a resident of Gonzales Village, Point Fortin, was tending to his crops when he came across what appeared to be a mound of dirt near his nearby. The man dug up the mound to find the decomposing body of the girl wrapped in a piece of cloth and called the police.

Police immediately went to the scene, retrieved the body and detained the child’s 32-year-old mother who lived nearby. Up to press time, the mother was still assisting police with their enquiries.

Police are going on her information that she delivered a stillborn baby at home in October and disposed of it at the back of the house, near a fig patch. The mother was in the eighth month of her pregnancy. She told police she was home alone when the child died but she did not kill the baby.

The mother lives with her common-law husband and their daughter. Police, however, are saying they have not ruled out foul play and that only an autopsy will determine if the child’s death was natural. The autopsy is expected to be done on Monday at the Forensic Sciences Centre, St James. Police said, if the findings of the autopsy coincide with the mother’s explanation, she might still face charges of concealing the birth of a child and illegally disposing of a body.

The mother’s husband, who works as a taxi driver, told police he was unaware of the pregnancy and the discovery yesterday came as news to him. Relatives and residents said the same thing.

They were very tight-lipped about the incident.

“We did not know she was pregnant. We don’t know anything,” a close relative said. A neighbour also said: “I used to see her by the house and sometimes by the road standing. I did not see her for a while. We are now hearing about this. We did not know about the pregnancy.”

ASP Ramphall, Sgt Ramsingh, Insp Neemai, Cpls Carter and Bajan and members of the Homicide Bureau Region III and South Western Division visited the scene.

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