Nanny lawyer wins evidence request
A lawyer for an Irish nanny charged in the United States with beating an infant who later died has won a request to preserve evidence in the case, including the baby's travel records and a list of people who had access to her.
Aisling McCarthy Brady, 34, made a brief appearance at Cambridge District Court in Massachusetts on Friday as her lawyer asked a judge to preserve an extensive list of potential evidence in the case.
Brady, originally from in Lavey in Co Cavan, is accused of assault and battery in the beating of Rehma Sabir last month. The girl was hospitalised with severe head injuries on January 14, her first birthday. She died two days later. Prosecutors allege Brady was the only person with the child when she received her injuries.
Brady's lawyer, Melinda Thompson, asked authorities to preserve all records related to the baby's travel from June 2010 until her death, including who she travelled with, where she stayed and whether she was examined by medical personnel during any trips.
Ms Thompson said last month the baby had travelled overseas - including trips to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and London - and was malnourished when she returned to the United States.
The defence also asked for a list of all occupants and visitors to the Cambridge apartment where Rehma lived with her parents, as well as all internet searches, email correspondence and the hard drive from the family's laptop computer.
Brady is "devastated because she didn't do this", Ms Thompson told reporters outside court.
Authorities have said Brady could be charged with murder once an autopsy is complete. A spokeswoman for District Attorney Gerry Leone said that prosecutors are still waiting for the autopsy results. In court documents, state police said a pillow, blanket and baby wipes stained with blood were found in the baby's bedroom.
Dr Alice Newton, medical director of the Child Protection Team at Boston Children's Hospital, diagnosed Rehma as a victim of abusive head trauma, according to a police report. The baby's parents, Nada Siddiqui and Sameer Sabir, told police Brady had been their nanny for about six months, caring for the baby while they worked.
Immigration officials have said Brady had been living in the United States illegally since 2002, when she arrived from Ireland under a tourist programme. She was only authorised to stay 90 days.