Parents of Georgia infant decapitated at birth say hospital staff pushed for cremation

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The parents of a baby decapitated during childbirth in Georgia last year say hospital staff encouraged the couple to have their son cremated instead of being sent to a funeral home, according to reports. 

The baby, Treveon Isaiah Taylor Jr., reportedly became stuck due to shoulder dystocia during the delivery by his mother, Jessica Ross, 20, on July 10, 2023, at the Southern Regional Medical Center in Riverdale, FOX 5 Atlanta reported. 

Dr. Tracey St. Julian, an OB-GYN, allegedly tried to deliver the child vaginally. Shortly before midnight, the decision was made to perform a cesarean section and the infant’s body was delivered; the head was delivered vaginally.

“The baby was decapitated for sure as a complication from shoulder dystocia,” attorney Roderick Edmond, himself a doctor who formerly practiced medicine, said during a press conference Wednesday, according to People. “But the standards of care are very, very simple. When there is a shoulder dystocia, there are tried and true things that must be done.” 

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The hospital where the baby was delivered has also said the baby died in utero.

The hospital denied any negligence in a court filing in November, and spokesperson Melinda Fulks told The Associated Press she couldn’t comment Wednesday because of the lawsuit.

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Georgia woman sues hospital over baby death

In a previous statement, the hospital said its “heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with the family and all those impacted by this tragic event.”

“Our prayers also remain with the dedicated team of physicians, nurses and staff at Southern Regional Medical Center who cared for this patient,” the statement said. 

The hospital noted that St. Julian was never an employee there. 

Decapitated baby's mom cries

Clayton County police were investigating, with the possibility of referring the case to prosecutors, the medical examiner’s office said in its Jan. 6 news release.

Clayton police Maj. Frank Thomas said in an email Wednesday to the AP the case was still under investigation. The department will not comment on details of active cases, he said.

“We just want justice for our son,” Treveon Taylor Sr. said, according to People. Referencing hospital staff, he alleged, “They lied to us.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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