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Prosecutors: NH Man Smothered Child Before Death

By Michael Rosenfield, WBZ-TV
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SOMERSWORTH, N.H. (CBS) — A New Hampshire man was arraigned Monday on a manslaughter charge in connection with a toddler’s death over the weekend.

Noah York (Credit:  Alisson Wilmonton)

Noah York (Credit: Family Photo)

Jared Pope, 30, of Somersworth has been charged in the death of 2-year-old Noah York. Pope was held on $250,000 cash bail.

York loved to play with his blocks and help out around the house, according to Noah’s mother who spoke with WBZ-TV but did not want her name used.

She said she would have done anything to protect him but was at work at the time.

Pope is accused of smothering the little boy inside their apartment in Somersworth.

Prosecutors said in court, Pope wrapped the child in blankets and tied the blankets with a rope because Noah was making too much noise.

“When that didn’t silence the child who was being fussy as he describes him, he put a sheet over that child, he put a pillow on top of the child because he could still hear this child crying, screaming and yelling,” said Prosecutor Geoff Ward with the N.H. Attorney General’s office.

Ward says Pope then took it a step further.

“He takes the duffel bag that by his own estimate weights 15 or 20-pounds, places it on the child’s back, he pinned the child down to keep him in his own words, from moving and to keep him from fussing any further and then he leaves,” said Ward.

Pope allegedly came back five minutes later and found Noah unconscious. He then called 911 and told police the boy had choked on milk or meat.

But an examination at the hospital showed there had been no choking incident, according to prosecutors. And that is when Pope confessed, and said he had done it before.

Prosecutors say Pope has convictions for drug charges and motor vehicle incidents.

Ashley Garen who lives in the same small apartment building was home at the time.

“We didn’t hear anything, sadly. I wish we did,” said Garen. “If we did we would have called 911.”

Ward says York sustained significant internal injuries and smothering, and showed signs of struggling to get free.

The child’s family members are grief-stricken.

“We’re in mourning,” said Noah’s maternal grandfather. “We’re very confused.”

 

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