WOBURN (CBS/AP) — An Irish nanny charged with killing a Massachusetts baby in her care is being held without bail after being arraigned on a murder charge.
Aisling Brady McCarthy, 34, appeared Thursday morning at Middlesex Superior Court on charges of murder and assault and battery on a child causing bodily injury.
Prosecutors say McCarthy “violently” injured baby Rehma Sabir. The baby was hospitalized with severe head injuries in January on her first birthday and died two days later. Her family lives in Cambridge.
McCarthy pleaded not guilty earlier to assault and battery on a child. She was jailed on $500,000 bail while authorities awaited the baby’s autopsy results. The charge against her was upgraded last week.
McCarthy, who had been living in Quincy before the child’s death, faces a pretrial hearing May 9, according to the court.
Defense attorney Melinda Thompson said McCarthy maintains her innocence and wants to clear her name.
The prosecutor assigned to the case, Assistant District Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, argued McCarthy should be held without bail because she’s in the United States illegally.
On Jan. 14, Cambridge Police were dispatched to Ash Street to investigate a report of an unresponsive infant, and Rehma Sabir was found to be breathing but unconscious. The child was taken to Children’s Hospital in Boston, where doctors determined she was suffering from subdural and retinal hemorrhaging, and cerebral swelling. On Jan. 16, the child was pronounced brain dead and subsequently died.
The state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy and ruled the cause of death blunt force head injuries, and the manner of death homicide and not accidental, according to the court.
Through an investigation, including interviews with witnesses, police concluded that McCarthy had sole custody of the child during the time that the girl sustained the head trauma injuries that caused her death.
On April 12, a Middlesex Grand Jury indicted McCarthy on a murder charge.
State police assigned to the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office and the Cambridge Police Department are investigating the case.
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