Angel Vanduker wrapped her child in a blanket and held her tightly till she stopped squirming.
Trigger Warning: The story has details of child murder that readers will find disturbing
An Illinois mother is facing charges after she reportedly suffocated her infant because the child was restless, resulting in her death. According to KIRO, Angel Vanduker, a 19-year-old mother of Pekin, Tazewell County, was arrested for the death of her 11-month-old daughter, Nova Tucker.
According to CIproud.com, Perkin police was alerted about an unresponsive baby at Vanduker's home address on September 21, 2020. On arrival, the police transported the infant to a hospital. When enquired about the child's unresponsiveness, Vanduker had told the police that the infant had swallowed a waffle and choked on it.
The baby was first taken to the UnityPoint Pekin Hospital and later moved to OSF Children’s Hospital in Peoria. Nova's condition was serious and the infant was put on life support. For the next three days, the baby battled to stay alive. However, she was taken off life support and the infant passed away after the struggle.
The baby was removed from life support on Thursday. https://t.co/tsOkF1gXjA— Jenise Rebholz (@JeniseRebholzTV) September 29, 2020
While the mother said that her baby had choked on a waffle, a medical examination proved that was a lie. The tests did not show any food item or any other obstruction in the child's airway. The police documents also revealed her statements were inconsistent.
According to the affidavit, Vanduker said she was "frustrated and tired and had attempted to get the baby to lay down with her on the couch." When the infant did not listen to her, Vanduker told the police that she wrapped the child in a blanket. She then held the infant tightly on her chest for a couple of minutes with her hands behind the baby's head. The mother continued to do so until the child stopped squirming.
Vanduker then claimed that she went to sleep with the baby by her side. According to court records, when she woke up from her brief nap, she found the baby unresponsive. Though the mother claimed she was aware of how her child passed away, an autopsy result showed that the child died of suffocation. With the evidence against her, Vanduker is charged with the involuntary manslaughter.
According to the Week, court details of the case stated that the woman performed an act that was likely to cause death but her actions did not lead to death directly. She is scheduled to appear in court on 15 October 2020.
Meanwhile, many such cases of infants being killed by their parents have been reported. According to the data available, about 700,000 children are abused in the country each year. About 678,000 children became victims of abuse and neglect in 2018. In the same year, 1,770 children died due to the same reasons in the country.