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20 years old mother sentenced for suffocating baby

CourtA young mother has been sentenced to home detention after admitting seriously harming her newborn baby by suffocating her while breastfeeding.

Shayna-Lee Broadbent, 20, was sentenced in the Auckland High Court today to 11 months' home detention.

In November she admitted a charge of causing grievous bodily harm with reckless disregard to safety.

During sentencing, Justice John Priestley said Broadbent, who was 18 at the time, had told her midwife that she was struggling to cope following the birth of her child.

One incident occurred while Broadbent was breastfeeding her baby, who was six or seven weeks old, in hospital.

The baby required urgent medical intervention after she was found to be floppy, unresponsive and without a pulse.

That child, who appears to have suffered no permanent damage, and another child born after Broadbent was charged by police, are now in the care of their paternal grandmother.

Justice Priestley said Broadbent's offending was "almost certainly" the product of the complex mental health issues affecting her at the time.
SOURCE: 3news

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