Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lakeland girl, 14, accused of killing her newborn son

A 14-year-old Lakeland girl was arrested Thursday, accused of killing her newborn baby and hiding the body in her bedroom, the Polk County Sheriff's Office said.

The girl's mother was picking up dirty laundry in their Lakeland home on Saturday when she smelled an odor coming from her daughter's room. She found a baby boy's corpse stuffed inside a shoebox, deputies said.

The mother called 911. Detectives interviewed the girl, who has not been identified. The teen told them that she went into labor on Sept. 19 and delivered the baby in her family's bathroom.

Detectives said the girl also told them she then squeezed her son's neck until he stopped breathing.

She cleaned the bathroom and hid the baby in the box, according to the Sheriff's Office. The girl was taken to Lakeland Regional Medical Center on Sept. 19 for treatment for a miscarriage, the Sheriff's Office said. It wasn't clear whether her parents knew she was being treated at the time.

An autopsy found that the baby was full-term and alive after being born. The cause of death was strangulation and blunt force trauma, the medical examiner's office said.

The girl faces first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse charges. She was taken to the Polk County Juvenile Detention Facility.

The investigation was continuing on Friday.

Lakeland girl, 14, accused of killing her newborn son 09/28/12 [Last modified: Friday, September 28, 2012 11:16pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. The Florida Gators' case for QB Luke Del Rio


    GAINESVILLE — It took three years and two transfers for Florida's Luke Del Rio to become a starting quarterback.

    Florida Gators quarterback Luke Del Rio (14) warms up next to quarterback Austin Appleby (12) before the game against the North Texas Mean Green on Saturday September 17, 2016 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. Final score was Florida 32 North Texas 0. (Monica Herndon, Times)
  2. Joe Henderson: Let's ask Speaker Richard Corcoran to spend some time in a sweltering classroom


    You've seen and heard the stories about how air-conditioning breakdowns created sweltering conditions in many Hillsborough County public schools. It is a sweaty, stinking, ongoing mess, and there is no quick fix.

    Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O' Lakes, has been shifting money from public schools to charter schools. It could go to help cool sweltering classrooms, instead. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Tampa Bay Times]
  3. Guest column: Julian Craft worked a lifetime to help those down and out in Brandon


    Julian Craft died June 28. He was 84. In this memoriam, Brandon attorney B. Lee Elam, a friend and colleague, recalls Craft as a man with humble beginnings who spent much of his life offering a hand-up to individuals and groups across Brandon who desperately needed it. Craft's family asked that donations in his honor …

    JulianCraft knew how circumstances could put a family in dire straits so he  worked to help address the immediate needs of Brandonites before other aid kicked in. [ERNEST HOOPER   |   Times, 2005]
  4. Updates to Clearwater's development rules brings skeptical response to sea level rise from vice mayor


    During a discussion this week about updates to Clearwater's development rules dealing with sea level rise, Vice Mayor Hoyt Hamilton took a skeptical stance.

  5. Brandon motorcyclist dies after car turns into his path


    A motorcyclist died Thursday night after a car turned into his path on a Brandon road, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.