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Friday 22 August 2014

Blood was found in the crib of US toddler

Post-mortem finds injuries to child's head and spinal cord

Richard Weir, Ralph Riegel and Louise Hogan

Published 24/01/2013 | 05:00

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Aisling McCarthy Brady
the house in Quincy, near Boston, where Aisling McCarthy Brady lives

BLOOD-stained baby wipes and bedclothes were found in the bedroom of the US toddler at the centre of the Irish nanny assault case, new court records have revealed.

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The bloody items were found in tiny Rehma Sabir's bedroom three days after the one-year-old was rushed to the hospital with fatal injuries, freshly released police reports claim.

Preliminary post-mortem findings found "multiple" bruises on the baby's head, along with injuries to her spinal cord.

It also emerged that a neighbour heard a baby crying and pounded on the door of the Boston apartment where little Rehma lived, just hours before the baby was rushed to hospital.

Irish nanny Aisling McCarthy Brady (34), who is originally from Lavey, just outside Cavan town, has denied assault and battery of the child, who later died.

The prosecution alleges that on January 14 the child was in Ms McCarthy Brady's care -- and that police had determined she had sole contact with the child during the time the injuries were sustained.

The child was declared "brain dead" on January 16 at Boston Children's Hospital. She was later pronounced dead.

The nanny, who last year married Don McCarthy, originally from Cork, has been remanded on $500,000 bail -- equivalent to €375,000.

According to prosecutors, further charges against Ms McCarthy Brady are "anticipated" following the conclusion of the final report by the chief medical examiner.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has completed its post-mortem.

Reports suggest the baby had bleeding from her brain and eyes, swelling of the brain and bone fractures.

Preliminary findings of the post mortem conducted on the baby on January 19 found "bruises to the top of and behind (the child's) right ear and her buttocks".

It also found "multiple" bruises under her scalp, along with injuries to her spinal cord.

The exact cause and manner of the baby's death is "pending further study," the records say.

Friends have rallied round the Irish nanny with a "Support for Aisling McCarthy Brady" page appearing on the Facebook social-media website.

But fresh revelations about the scene at the baby's house are contained in previously unpublished legal papers, which were released last night.

They reveal that a state police investigative team, accompanied by a chemist from the crime lab, went back to the child's residence in Cambridge, Boston – and found the blood-stained items.

"Observed during that search were baby wipes, found discarded in the 'Diaper Genie' next to the changing table, with red-brown stains that tested positive in the screening test for blood as well as a blanket and pillow in the crib in the same room, with red-brown stains that tested positive in screening tests for blood," police reports state.

The parents told police they did not know why the blood-stained items were in the room.

On January 15, after the baby had been hospitalised but one day before she was pronounced dead, police also noted that "the wall directly next to the changing table had a piece of dry wall/plaster missing and the corresponding remnants were on the floor.

"The location of the missing dry wall was consistent with it being damaged by forceful contact with the corner of the changing table."

Police added that the child's parents had not seen the damage before and did not know how it had happened.

The documents also say that Ms McCarthy Brady "had sole custody of and contact with Rehma Sabir after 9.30am until Rehma was found seizing in her crib at 4.30pm.

"Rehma Sabir was sitting on her own, feeding and playing at the time (the mother) left the home that morning."

Crying

The baby's mother, Nada Siddiqui (29), is a Princeton-educated financial analyst and the father, Sameer Sabir (34), is a London-born entrepreneur.

Both parents left the apartment that morning, leaving the baby with Ms McCarthy Brady, the documents state.

A neighbour who lived one floor above the apartment on Ash Street reported to police that she heard crying as she walked past the family's kitchen door on her way to do laundry.

According to the documents, the woman said the crying continued and at around 9.30am it changed to "extreme crying".

The neighbour said she knocked on the front door for a minute-and-a-half.

"Her knocks went unanswered and she went back upstairs," the report states.

A former boyfriend of Ms McCarthy Brady has insisted she would never hurt any youngster. Irish-American David Furey said: "She loved kids. I just wish her luck."

Meanwhile, in Co Cavan, a neighbour said Ms McCarthy Brady had babysat her children, adding that she would "recommend" her to anyone.

"She was a nice young girl. She wouldn't do a thing like that," she added.

Irish Independent

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