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Neonaticide: A Comprehensive Review of Investigative and Pathologic Aspects of 55 Cases

NCJ Number
Journal of Family Violence Volume: 26 Issue: 4 Dated: May 2011 Pages: 263-276
Joy Lynn Shelton; Tracey Corey; William H. Donaldson; Emily Hemberger Dennison
Date Published
May 2011
14 pages
This study researched cases of neonaticide.
Analysis of neonaticide cases from a law enforcement perspective is virtually non-existent in the research literature. Nonetheless, law enforcement and prosecutors face unique challenges when investigating and prosecuting neonaticide; and a specialized, informed approach is necessary. By highlighting the crime scene characteristics and autopsy findings of 55 neonaticide victims, the authors hope to assist the law enforcement and legal communities in their neonaticide investigations. Specifically, this article clarifies how neonaticide occurs by chronologically examining the pregnancy, the birth and death of the infant, the subsequent crime scene (or scenes) and the pathological findings. The article also highlights the potential challenges that may arise during investigation and prosecution of these cases in addition to providing the forensic community with recommended investigative techniques. (Published Abstract)