Woman Charged With Different Crimes for Dead or Live Baby
Purvi Patel has been charged with feticide and neglect of her newborn baby whose body she allegedly placed in a restaurant trash bin in St. Joseph County, Indiana.
The incident happened in July 2013, noted the South Bend Tribune.
Patel reportedly went to a local hospital because she was bleeding after having a premature delivery.
According to court papers, Patel told hospital workers that she thought the baby was stillborn because it was not breathing, placed it in a bag and put the bag in the dumpster.
However, a forensic pathologist later stated that the baby was actually was born alive and breathing before it died.
Authorities also claim that Patel took some drugs that she ordered from Hong Kong in a homemade effort to end her pregnancy.
Patel pleaded not guilty to neglect and her lawyer recently tried to get the feticide charge dropped, but a judge ruled both charges will stand.
According to the News-Sentinel, Indiana defines feticide "as knowingly or intentionally terminating a human pregnancy with an intention other than to produce a live birth or to remove a dead fetus."
The Daily Beast notes that Patel can only be convicted of neglect "if prosecutors could prove she gave birth to a live baby," but the feticide charge would mean the baby was not born alive.
So one charge would apply if the baby was alive, but the other charge would apply if the baby was born dead.
Sources: The Daily Beast, News-Sentinel, South Bend Tribune (Image Credit: St. Joseph County Police Handout to Media, Flickr)