Report says "concern for co-sleeping" in death of baby

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office has released its report on the death of a baby that occurred on Friday, February 21st at a home near Burleigh and Palmer on Milwaukee's north side.

The Medical Examiner's report says a five-month-old baby girl was found unresponsive by her mother after being placed in the parents' bed for a nap.

The report says the baby's mothers story to officials did not match that of the father -- and the report says "there is some concern for co-sleeping" in this case.

Emergency personnel were dispatched to the home around 2:00 p.m. on Friday.

When officials arrived at the scene, the Medical Examiner's report says the baby was in her mother's arms, and her mother was attempting CPR. Present at the home included the baby and the baby's mother, with the baby's father arriving on scene shortly afterwards.

The Medical Examiner's report says the baby's mother reported putting the baby down for a nap around 12:00 p.m. -- placing the baby down on top of the mother's bed, which was described as a queen sized mattress. The baby's mother said the child's head was placed near a pillow, and the child was laying on top of a blanket.

The report says the baby's mother told officials she was laying in the bed with the baby, until the baby's three-year-old sibling said she needed to use the bathroom. The baby's mother took the three-year-old to the bathroom, and then went back to the bedroom -- at which point she says everything was fine. A short time later, she says she went to the kitchen to make the three-year-old a snack -- and says that when she returned to the bedroom with a bottle and laid down next to the baby (around 1:00 p.m.), she noticed the baby was purple.

The report says the baby's mother contacted the baby's father, and then called 911.

The Milwaukee Fire Department received the call around 1:45 p.m. The report says that upon their arrival at the scene, MFD officials did not initiate any resuscitative measures due to evidence the baby was already deceased.

The Medical Examiner arrived on scene around 4:00 p.m.

The Medical Examiner's report says the baby was discovered to be well nourished and clean upon the Medical Examiner's arrival at the scene.

The Medical Examiner noted a Pack 'n Play in the living room that was observed to be in good condition.

The Medical Examiner said a front bedroom in the home, where the baby was initially found was found to be cluttered and contained several choke hazards on the floor, including money and candy.

Additionally, an ashtray was discovered on the floor, just inside the bedroom door, and a pack of cigarettes was observed at the head of the bed, next to a pillow.

The report says the baby's mother admitted to smoking during her pregnancy and in the home since the baby's birth.

The report says the queen sized bed had a well-worn pillow top mattress that did not appear to offer much support. The report says the baby's mother told officials the baby did not have her head on any of the three pillows found on the bed -- nor was she covered by a blanket.

The report says that when the Medical Examiner spoke with the baby's mother, she said they were working on making an appointment for the baby because she had a cough and runny nose. The mother said "everyone" in the family had recently been sick with a cold -- and mentioned her boyfriend (the baby's father) had strep throat and was on antibiotics.

The baby's mother told the Medical Examiner the baby normally sleeps in the Pack 'n Play -- but said that morning, when the baby's father left for work, she moved the baby from the Pack 'n Play into the bed, according to the report.

The Medical Examiner's report indicates a detective spoke with the baby's father, who said he, the baby's mother and the baby had all slept in the adult bed the previous night -- and said the baby had been with them all night. He said he was scheduled to work on Friday, February 21st at 5:00 a.m. -- and said he jumped out of bed and rushed to leave for work that day.

The child's mother was taken into custody due to the fact that her story did not match that of the baby's father. No charges have yet been filed in this case.

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