An Indian American woman who allegedly threw her newborn baby into a dumpster minutes after she was born, pleaded guilty to manslaughter Sept. 12, and affirmed “yes” when a judge asked if she intended to harm the infant.
Nausheen Rahman, 30, of Staten Island, New York, faces 12 years in prison when she is sentenced Oct. 12. Rahman had initially been charged with second-degree murder and concealing a human corpse, and faced a sentence of 25 years to life if the case had gone to court.
New York state Supreme Court Judge Mario Mattei had told Rahman at an earlier hearing that he would set a trial date if she did not accept the plea deal set up by prosecutors.
Rahman, who is unmarried, gave birth to a baby girl on March 12, 2016. She then got a plastic bag and wrapped the bloodied body in it, and disposed of her in the trash.
A coroner’s report indicated that the newborn still had air in her lungs, meaning she was alive when disposed of. Rahman told prosecutors she did not check to see if the baby was breathing.
“I was like, 'OK, he's not crying, he's not moving, maybe he's dead,’” Rahman told detectives in a video-recorded interview last year. “When I picked it up to put it in the bag, that's when I saw he wasn't breathing.” The young woman told police she made no attempt to revive the corpse.
At earlier hearings and in interviews with police, Rahman said she had no idea she was pregnant until a few months before she delivered. She managed to hide the pregnancy from her parents, and alleged that she feared for her life if her parents found out, as the father of her child was not the man her parents had arranged for her to marry.
Rahman said she never would have harmed her baby had she not feared her parents’ wrath.
No charges have been brought against the father of the baby. Rahman told police he wanted nothing to do with the child.
In court Sept. 12, Rahman’s father watched his daughter pleading guilty to manslaughter with his chin in his hands, according to the Staten Island Live Web site. Rahman – who has been in custody since the baby’s body was found on March 12, 2016 – was brought into the courtroom in shackles (See earlier India-West story here).