A medical examiner asked to review the autopsy records of an infant who died while in the care of Irish nanny Aisling Brady McCarthy in the US has requested additional time.
Ms Brady McCarthy is accused of killing toddler Rehma Sabir in the family’s apartment near Boston. The Co Cavan woman, who has been in jail since January 2013, has pleaded not guilty.
Jacqueline Faherty, chief legal counsel for the Massachusetts Medical Examiner’s Office, said in Middlesex County Superior Court on Thursday that Dr Katherine Lindstrom has not yet reached a final conclusion on the 2013 death of 12-month-old Rehim Sabir and would like to review grand jury testimony before making a determination.
“There’s been no final conclusion. She still has a few items she wants to look over,” Ms Faherty told Judge Maureen Hogan during a brief court hearing.
The judge asked the state medical examiner’s office last month to appear in court and explain why it was taking so long to review the autopsy report.
The initial request to re-examine the records was made four months ago.
Ms Faherty said Dr Lindstrom expects to complete that review within two to four weeks once she receives the new material, including the grand jury testimony. Chief medical examiner Henry Nields, will also be asked to review the case, Ms Faherty added.
Testimony before the grand jury which indicted Ms McCarthy in the child’s shaking death is secret and has not been released to the public.
Judge Hogan also issued a protective order barring any grand jury information given to the state medical examiner’s office from being publicly released.
Ms Brady McCarthy (37) sat at the defence table during the proceedings while her husband, Don McCarthy, a painter from Co Cork, sat several rows behind flanked by supporters.
Ms McCarthy and her husband declined to comment as they left the courthouse.
“We’re still in the same spot we were before,” said Melinda Thompson, Ms Brady McCarthy’s attorney. “We’re hopeful.”
Ms Thompson said she was happy the state medical examiner was being so thorough in reviewing the case.
“I think its impressive they’re doing a review. It’s terrific,” she said.
Prosecutors allege Ms Brady McCarthy was babysitting the infant in the child’s Cambridge, Massachusetts home when she slammed the 12-month-old against a wall and changing table, causing severe head injuries, then laid the baby in her crib.
They allege she pretended the baby was sleeping when relatives came to check on the infant.
The child died two days later on January 16th, 2013. Ms Brady McCarthy was arrested just days after the infant’s death and was indicted for murder in April 2013.
She spent more than two years in jail before being released on home confinement on $15,000 bail in May.
Prosecutors had sought to keep Ms Brady McCarthy in jail, fearing she could be deported as an illegal alien if she was freed.
Prosecutors also alleged that she was a flight risk.
The nanny’s defence team, however, claim that prosecutors ignored bone injuries and compression fractures which the child received when she was travelling abroad and not in Ms Brady McCarthy’s care.
Defence attorneys also claim the infant had a history of illness.
Several medical specialists have also concluded that the child died of natural causes.
The next hearing is slated for August 28th followed by a trial in October.