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Newborn baby dies after mother rolls on top of him in bed

A newborn baby was found dead after his mother rolled over on top of him in bed, Northern California officials said, saying the incident appeared to be a "horrible, horrible accident."

The boy's mother woke up about 9 a.m. Monday and discovered she was on top of the baby, who wasn't breathing, said Deputy Royjindar Singh of the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department. Emergency crews went to the home, located in Waterford near Modesto, and began CPR before taking the boy to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The mother, whose name was not released by authorities, didn't know how long she had been on top of the baby, Singh said.

There were no signs of foul play, trauma or anything suspicious at the home, Singh said. Investigators are waiting for the coroner's office to finish the autopsy and toxicology tests, but until then, he said, they believe the death was an accident.

Singh said news of the baby's death had already stirred response in the area, which saw several similar deaths in recent years. According to the Modesto Bee, a dozen infants in Stanislaus County died from accidental suffocation while sleeping with parents or family members in an eight-month period in 2007 and 2008.

The uptick prompted a public safety campaign led by a county task force, which created videos, posters and billboards warning parents about safe-sleeping habits, Singh said.

"It must have worked for a while," he said. "Hopefully it's not a trend we're going to see again."

Officials have received some calls on the recent death, Singh added, wondering why the mother wasn't arrested.

"It looks like just a horrible, horrible accident," he said. "If something changes, we'll take appropriate action."

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— Kate Mather

twitter.com/katemather

 
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