Newborn Baby Dies After Suffering Grease Burns; Parents Waited 2 Weeks To Get Medical Help

Over the weekend, a distressing incident occurred in West Brighton when a one-month-old boy was discovered unresponsive and later pronounced dead. The authorities are currently awaiting the results of an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Meanwhile, the baby’s parents, Jenice Lightfoot, 36, and Leonard Thompson, 38, face charges of endangerment following allegations that the infant had previously suffered severe burns that went untreated. The tragic discovery was made early Saturday morning around 6:45 a.m. at 240 Broadway, located in the West Brighton Houses, a public housing development managed by the New York City Housing Authority, according to court documents obtained by PIX 11.

Emergency medical services rushed the baby to Richmond University Medical Center, where he was declared dead less than an hour later at 7:35 a.m. According to a criminal complaint, the couple reported to the police that the baby had been accidentally burned on April 11 during a cooking incident.

Allegedly, the baby was in Thompson’s arms when another child in the home caused a kitchen accident that resulted in hot grease causing severe burns to the infant’s left arm. Despite the grievous nature of the injuries, which hospital staff identified as second or third-degree burns, it is alleged that the couple did not seek professional medical attention until April 27, a delay of over two weeks.

Thompson reportedly attempted to treat the baby’s injuries at home, explaining to the police that he used medicine and gauze but avoided taking the child to a hospital for fear of inadequate home treatment. He rationalized that he believed the burns could be managed without professional medical intervention.

Lightfoot, on the other hand, expressed a different concern to authorities. She feared that reporting the injuries or seeking medical help might lead to the authorities taking her child away. This fear reportedly kept her from seeking the necessary medical care immediately after the incident, told the Daily News.

The couple’s failure to obtain timely medical care for the severe burns led to their arrest on charges of reckless endangerment and acting in a manner injurious to a child. They both pleaded not guilty to the charges. The severity of the case is reflected in the bail set by the court: $300,000/$100,000 cash for Thompson and $150,000/$50,000 cash for Lightfoot. Both defendants are currently being held at Rikers Island.

The case is set to proceed in Criminal Court this Thursday, where more details will likely emerge. The ongoing investigation by the police, coupled with the pending autopsy results, will be crucial in determining the full circumstances surrounding the tragic death of the infant and whether additional charges are warranted based on the autopsy findings.

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