NEW YORK (AP) — A woman who apparently hid her pregnancy from her boyfriend, gave birth in his home and then tossed her newborn daughter out a seventh-story window to her death was arrested Tuesday on murder and manslaughter charges, police said.
Police officers said they found Jennifer Berry’s infant daughter with her umbilical cord still attached in a courtyard of her boyfriend’s Bronx apartment building on Monday afternoon. They had responded to the building after receiving a call that an infant had fallen from a window.
An autopsy revealed the infant died of blunt force injuries, chief medical examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson said Tuesday. The baby’s death was ruled a homicide, meaning she had been born alive.
Berry, who is 33 years old and lives in nearby Yonkers, was being held Tuesday in police custody pending her arraignment and couldn’t be contacted. It was unclear whether she had an attorney who could comment for her.
Berry’s boyfriend told police he was in another room when the baby was born and when the baby plunged from the window. He told investigators he didn’t realize either event had occurred and had no idea his girlfriend was pregnant, officials said.
It was unclear how much time elapsed between the baby’s birth and her fall from the window, they said.
The city’s Administration for Children’s Services is investigating the circumstances that led to the baby’s death, a spokesman said. Authorities said privacy laws prohibited the agency from commenting on whether child welfare investigators had interacted with the family before.
Tiffany Martinez, who lives across the street from the Bronx apartment building, told The New York Times she was shaken up by the baby’s death.
“I get frustrated with my son a lot,” she told the newspaper, but “doing harm to him never crossed my mind.”