Doctor Warns Against 'Sofa-Sharing' After Baby Dies In Grandmother's Arms

| by Tony Tran
article imagearticle image

A family in Manchester, England suffered a tragedy when their 3-week-old baby died in the arms of his grandmother.

The grandmother, Eileen Charnock, 56, reportedly suffers from insomnia and had not slept for 68 hours at the time of the baby’s death. The baby, George Charnock, was in her arms before she fell asleep on the family’s sofa.

The two were in the house that Eileen shared with her daughter Emily at the time of the incident. Eileen had been babysitting George and another one of Emily’s children when the baby died.

The grandmother was arrested and suspected of causing the death. A blood sample taken from her proved to be negative for alcohol.

She has since been released and has told an inquest that she was “in her own hell” and relived the experience every day.

According to the inquest, Eileen had insomnia after working shift work for many years. After long periods of staying awake, she would reportedly fall into “a deep sleep.”

"At that point I had 68 hours of no sleep and I fell asleep,” Eileen said, reported Daily Mail. “Once I go out I go out. Nobody woke me up it was just a reaction. I was lying lengthways. I woke up. Then I shot up, I saw George at the bottom lying there, I got hold of George, he wasn't responding.

"I'm in my own hell,” she added. “I live that day every day, part of me died that day he died. I just went out like a light. I just wish I could turn the clock back."

Emily reportedly returned to her home to find forensics officials around her home.

"I saw people in white suits, forensics, coming out (of) my house,” Emily said. “I just said, 'who's dead who's dead?' I saw them coming out with bags, I said 'what's going on?' George had died. I have been trying so hard to block it out."

George had been born prematurely and Emily had issues throughout the pregnancy stemming from alcohol, according to the Mirror.

"He was so beautiful, he was so angelic,” said Emily. “He was just perfect."

“Sofa sharing” can kill a baby, BBC reported.

“The accidental obstruction of the air passages has got to be a real possibility,” said pathologist Dr. Naomi Carter. “Given the history, I think it’s go to be a distinct possibility.

"I can't say it must be the cause of death, the cause of death here must be described as unascertained,” she added. “I emphasize that sharing a sofa with a baby is not a safe thing to do."

Sources: Daily Mail, BBC

Photo Credit: Daily Mail,