One year-old dies at Century Country Club under suspicious circumstances. Police have not confirmed Shaken Baby Syndrome as the cause of death.

A one year-old girl has died under suspicious circumstances at the Century Country Club. According to news stories, the person-of-interest has been terminated from the country club employment and was subsequently escorted off of the property. The incident allegedly occurred on the property of the country club. The Westchester County Medical Examiner is working to determine the cause of death. The Harrison and Yonkers Police Departments and the Westchester District Attorney’s Office are conducting the investigation into the girl’s death. The Century Country Club representatives announced their intention to cooperate with the investigation. Sources report that the girl was taken emergently to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital and placed on life support. Despite advanced life support measures the baby girl died September 14, 2008.  

There is no single factor has been identified as the cause of child abuse. In general, there is an interaction of multiple risk factors in the environment that place children at risk to be victims of abuse. Researchers have identified abusive parents or caregivers as having risk factors such as substance abuse, low self-esteem, mental or physical disability, depression, history of abuse as a child, poor coping skills, poor impulse control, history of violent behavior or history of being raised in a group setting with no positive parental role.

All children are potential victims of child abuse, but some factors increase the risk for a child to be abused.   

Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS) is condition caused by the shaking of an infant or child.  The action of rapidly shaking an infant or child causes the sudden forward, backward and sideway motion of the head. During the shaking action the brain is injured from hitting against the inside of the bony skull, causing inflammation, bleeding, separation of vessels and nerve fibers in the soft brain tissue on all sides of the brain. The brain of an infant or child is very soft because it has more water content and it is easier to injure than an adult brain. Therefore, less energy is required to cause lethal injury to an infant or child’s brain.  In SBS, the eyes may get injured by the sudden increase in pressure and motion around the soft tissues that make up the delicate structure of the eyes. After the shaking, the brain and the eyes bleed inside the confined spaces they are contained in.  This bleeding causes high pressure to build within the head and eyes. The damage caused by shaking the head, brain and eye structures and the increasing high pressure that follows causes permanent injury or death for the infant or child. If death does not occur the infant or child may be left with permanent brain damage, blindness, neuromuscular disability, paralysis, deafness, learning disabilities and/or a seizure disorder.

Christopher Keane
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California Child Abuse and Child Injury Lawyer
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