A baby delivered by C-section in Montreal, Canada, after his mother was attacked on Monday, died hours after delivery. Legal experts claim that the death makes the baby a victim of homicide.
CBCNews reports that on early Monday morning, a little after 2 a.m., a husband repeatedly stabbed his wife several times inside their Montreal apartment, off of Langelier Boulevard. The victim, 33, was in her eighth month of pregnancy when the stabbing occurred, and in an effort to save the unborn child, a doctor performed an emergency C-section. The mom survived the ordeal but the child did not. Legal experts said that the suspect should face homicide charges for the baby.
“So if the child was alive, even for a moment, outside the child’s mother’s body, it would be considered a legal person such that you could be charged with murdering that child if the child didn’t survive,” said attorney Daniel Brown, who specializes in criminal law.
In many situations where a fetus dies after a mother is attacked, the suspect would not be charged with homicide. The rule only applies if the unborn baby is considered a “living person.” A fetus who cannot survive without the mother’s body is not considered a living being. The subject remains controversial between those who feel life begins at conception and others who feel a “life is only a life” when the infant can survive without the mom.
“It would be treated as an aggravating feature on sentencing, that the mother was pregnant and lost the fetus as a result of this,” Brown said. “But it wouldn’t amount to a separate murder charge. In order to be found guilty of murder, you have to kill someone who was living.”
In the case in question, the baby survived several hours after delivery, albeit in “critical condition.” The names of the suspect and victim have not yet been released, but police arrested the suspect shortly after the incident.
Check back with Crime Online as additional details become available.