Infanticide charge stopped

Last updated 10:03 21/03/2014

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A woman who was originally charged with murdering her newborn baby, and then infanticide, will now not face any charge.

The woman, 23, was not present when her case was called in the High Court at Wellington today.

She was originally charged in September 2012 after a newborn baby's body was found in the backyard of a Lower Hutt house.

Although a murder charge was laid in the District Court, the Crown changed that to infanticide in the High Court.

Today Justice Ron Young said the Solicitor-General had entered a stay - effectively stopping the charge - against the woman.

The judge said the court was not required to do anything in respect of the case and the woman would not face trial.

No reason was given in court for the Solicitor-General's decision.

Her name was permanently suppressed.

A man who had been living at the same house as her is yet to face trial on sex charges.

Last year a judge considered mental health issues relating to the woman and found that the charge against her could proceed to the next stage. In his decision he said the woman's circumstances were "deeply tragic".

He said there was evidence of historic abuse and that it was not until she was in labour that she knew she was pregnant.

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- The Dominion Post

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