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Policewoman jailed for killing her baby

The Local · 29 Jun 2011, 17:12

Published: 29 Jun 2011 17:12 GMT+02:00

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Volker Stronczyk, a judge at the Verden district court in northern Germany, delivered the sentence after an emotional trial in which the 25-year-old suspect broke down in tears repeatedly. The defence said it would appeal.

The woman was originally charged with murder, but after considering mitigating circumstances, authorities decided to prosecute her on manslaughter charges instead.

According to the court, the highway patrol officer met her boyfriend in October 2009 just after leaving a previous relationship and without knowing she was pregnant.

Although she realized she was getting bigger, the woman might not even have known she was pregnant – two weeks before the birth she ran a relay race and put on a bikini, something the judge said was “not typical of a heavily pregnant woman.” She told friends she had a poor diet and wasn’t doing enough sports.

But then the woman went into labour and gave birth as her boyfriend dozed nearby. She claimed that she may have slipped in attempting to sever the umbilical cord with scissors, but the could ruled that “there was no rescue effort.” The baby died from a stab wound to its belly.

After slipping the baby under the bed, she went with her boyfriend to a birthday party and eventually stuffed the body into a backpack and buried it.

Story continues below…

The suspect later broke down to her boyfriend and confessed everything. They both went immediately to the police – something the court ruled was a mitigating factor in addition to her strong display of remorse.

DAPD/The Local/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

18:05 June 29, 2011 by Jack Kerouac
"the woman might not even have known she was pregnant ­ two weeks before the birth she ran a relay race and put on a bikini"

She didn't know she was pregnant, even after a few months? There is no way a woman would not know she was pregnant after that long, considering the obvious signs. I wonder if she noticed two weeks before the birth, while "running"? Her story is nonesense. She is a cold-blooded killer who would rather stab her newborn child than 'shock' her lazy boyfriend that she was carrying another man's child. She chose to sleep around, and ran from her responsibility and fear. What is going on in this country?
18:44 June 29, 2011 by hOU
Less than 5 years for murder (by a law enforcer)!

What a f****** joke! What f****** disgrace ...
20:02 June 29, 2011 by marimay
This is pretty disgusting. It doesn't send a good message to people. You can get away with just about anything here.
20:22 June 29, 2011 by auslanderus
I agree with everyone above. Today life means nothing to people. So sad......
21:05 June 29, 2011 by harcourt
The public expects the highest of standards from their law enforcement officers. I would like to know how stringent the character tests and enquiries are before prospective employees are recruited !!
00:26 June 30, 2011 by Lisa Rusbridge
The German judicial system baffles me. It truly does. Since when is breaking down and crying interpreted as remorse that warrants a lighter sentence? For all anyone knows it may have been crying fear for being sentenced to years in prison. Fear that she'll never get another boyfriend who she'll be ably to impress by being a baby killer.

There's something wrong with the system that levies a slap on the wrist to a convicted killer. The good news is she'll be be free by the time she's 30 and can sleep around and become pregnant many more times and murder those innocent children as well.

[shakes head and walks away]
01:50 June 30, 2011 by bartschaff
People here really like to see things all black or white. What she did is horrible, sure, but not only isn't it completely impossible that she repented, but also she is probably more in need of a psychiatrist than jail time. Then what's the justification of a longer period in prison? She is having her punishment already, she isn't a danger to society, nor is it reasonable to believe that people will follow her 'example' because a shorter jail time. Besides, at least it was her child, so her crime, shoking as it is, can almost be seen as a way-to-late abortion...

Anyways, I, for one, am quite happy to live in a country with a judicial system that's not so draconian...
07:18 June 30, 2011 by hOU
She isn't a danger to society? Did that child have no place in society?

My feeling is that prison sentences are deliberately low to reduce the cost to the state; they certainly bear little relation to the crime.
08:19 June 30, 2011 by MaKo
Okay, let me see... if you cry to express remorse for killing a human being with a pair of scissors and stuffing the body into a backpack, then it isn't murder? Does she go back to work as a cop after the meager 4 1/2 years? As in, to protect and serve?
09:16 June 30, 2011 by freechoice
when a person is pregnant, she may have mood swings that will make her behave irrationally. you have to understand this and don't make her like a condemned person. she should have consulted her boyfriend, maybe he likes kids!
09:42 June 30, 2011 by marimay
Sorry, I can not distinguish between right and wrong at the moment, for I am having a mood swing.

No, that just doesn't work for me.
10:29 June 30, 2011 by moistvelvet
I think what people find most shocking is that this woman was a police officer, so you would expect them not to be a crazed nutjob!

I find it hard to beleive that she didn't know about the pregnancy, that she "slipped", but I accept it is possible. But what I can't believe is that this childs life is worth only 4 1/2 years in prison and that the defence is even considering an appeal, if she really is remorseful then she would accept the full force of the law, it seems she actually thinks she hasn't done anything that bad.
11:49 June 30, 2011 by GolfAlphaYankee
I think the court considered attenuated circumstances because she went to the police and confessed ... otherwise no one would´ve known.

but still ....4 years !?
16:20 June 30, 2011 by Gretl
-bartschaff - we'll remind you of nice it is to live in a country with a less draconian system when someone kills, molests or rapes a member of your family. Does repenting make it OK? Golly, I killed your wife in a fit of rage when she took my parking space, but I am SO sorry! I was PMSing, you can't hold me accountable for my actions. It's not fair and I already said I was sorry.

Even I teach my daughters that sorry doesn't always fix things. Sorry doesn't fix an injury or even a death. Dead is still dead.
16:55 June 30, 2011 by PPLJ
''......but the could ruled that.... '' court?
18:18 June 30, 2011 by Jack Kerouac
"Sorry, I can not distinguish between right and wrong at the moment, for I am having a mood swing."

@Marimay: That's the best comment I've seen yet.
18:48 June 30, 2011 by Slimtots
Nothing in this story sounds believable
10:27 July 1, 2011 by ValP
Why not? I've heard similar stories (with or without the killing part) many times. Women not noticing they are pregnant till the actual birth. These women are NOT NORMAL by any means of course. This woman is obviously crazy, too.
14:26 July 1, 2011 by golfcricket
@ Bartschaff: I really think you need to go check yourself into a psych ward.. You really need some serious help, or you need to get off the crack pipe..
03:28 July 2, 2011 by glenhope
There are plenty of case of women not knowing they are pregnant and showing no signs.

We don't know how long the labour lasted. There was no help, as the boyfriend was asleep. She would have had to have cut the cord herself in an exhausted, confused, panicky state, so cutting the baby by accident and being incapable of treating it is quite credibe. If she had kept quiet and just buried the body, she could have got away with it. Confessing was her undoing. The court could have suspended the prison sentence and sent her for psychiatric treatment.
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