A 14-year-old girl in Polk County, Fla. was arrested Thursday for allegedly choking her newborn son to death and storing the body in a shoebox after she secretly gave birth in a bathroom at her home earlier this month, WJXT reports.
Just days after being treated for what was reported to be a miscarriage on Sept. 19, Polk County sheriff’s deputies got a call indicating that the body of a full-term baby had been found stuffed in a shoebox at the teenaged girl’s residence.
Deputies say Cassidy Goodson, 14, went into the bathroom, covered her mouth with a towel and ran water to hide the fact that she was in labor. Goodson admitted that she used a pair of scissors to “pry the baby out” and the 9.5 pound, 20.4 inch baby was delivered alive into the toilet, according to WJXT.
The teenager said she then picked up the infant out of the toilet and checked for a pulse. After she found one, she allegedly put her hands around the baby’s throat and squeezed until his tiny body was still and lifeless, the Sheriff’s office said.
Goodson’s mother reportedly found the newborn’s body after she smelled a foul odor while picking up dirty laundry in her daughter’s room.
WJXT has more details on this tragic story:
Deputies said the girl then cleaned the bathroom, bathing herself and the dead infant before placing the child’s body in a shoebox, along with soiled towels and clothing.
Detectives learned Goodson, who weighs 100 pounds and is about 5 feet 3 inches tall, had been attempting to conceal her pregnancy from her family by wearing baggy clothing for the past several months.
An autopsy determined the newborn was a full-term infant and that he was alive and breathing prior to death. The cause of death was a result of asphyxia from strangulation and blunt force trauma.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Goodson told detectives that she choked the baby to “stop him from breathing.”
Goodson is facing charges of premeditated first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse. Police said the investigation is still ongoing.
The Ledger reports that Circuit Judge Mark Carpanini ordered the girl to remain in secure detention during a brief hearing on Friday. Goodson will be represented by a public defender. Meanwhile, prosecutors are determining whether to charge the teen as an adult.
“An autopsy determined the baby was a full term infant and that he was alive and breathing prior to death. The cause of death was a result of asphyxia from strangulation and blunt force trauma,” the report states, citing the Sheriff’s office.