Mother charged after second newborn dies from co-sleeping, deputies say

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Erin Piche-Pitts, 25.

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. — A Florida mom was arrested and charged with manslaughter after deputies say two of her newborns died from co-sleeping.

In November 2009, 25-year-old Erin Piche-Pitts had her first child, the Orlando Sentinel reports. Thirteen days after the girl was born, Piche-Pitts fell asleep while breastfeeding and later woke up to find the child unresponsive. Officials say the infant suffocated to death.

On Sept. 18, she gave birth to a boy. Before taking him home, hospital staff talked with her about safety and the risks of co-sleeping.

Eighteen days later, the baby woke up crying, so she fed him and propped him on her arm. Piche-Pitts then fell asleep for two hours and woke up to find the boy unresponsive. He later died.

“I’ve seen these cases before,” Sheriff Grady Judd told FOX 13.  “The first one is a horrible, tragic event in life.  The second is a horrible, tragic loss of life of an infant, but she was irresponsible, and as a result, she’s got two dead babies.  It’s time for her to go to prison.”

Due to “repeated warnings” about the dangers of co-sleeping, deputies arrested Piche-Pitts on Tuesday and found the newborn’s death was “through her own culpable negligence.”

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