Baltimore Midwife Indicted For Involuntary Manslaughter

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Baltimore midwife has been indicted on involuntary manslaughter charges after a baby died during a home delivery.

Jessica Kartalija reports the mother was warned that a home delivery could be risky.

Karen Carr, a Baltimore midwife who’s delivered more than 1,200 babies, is facing manslaughter and child abuse charges after a baby she was delivering inside a Virginia home died.

“Her main purpose was to help this woman get what she wanted.  Her history shows she was qualified,” said attorney John Kenneth Zwerling.

Carr’s attorney says the baby’s body was out, but his head became caught.  He was declared dead at a local hospital.

“I’m flabbergasted by the story and it didn’t have to happen,” said OB/GYN Dr. Glenna Andersen.

Andersen says home births are a risk that shouldn’t be taken.  She also says gynecologists rarely deliver breech babies because of the risk and that C-sections are much safer.

“I would prefer, if things are going well, to deliver a baby vaginally.  I don’t want to do C-sections; their risk is higher, but there are times when C-sections are the right thing to do,” Andersen said.

Carr is licensed to practice here in Maryland—not Virginia.

Morgan Hanslick delivered her son at home and knows Carr.  She believes the midwife did nothing wrong.

“Karen did everything in her power to make sure that baby came into the world and was not at fault for her medical practices as a midwife,” Hanslick said.

An Alexandria grand jury also indicted Carr on charges of neglect and acting without a license.

The baby’s mother–who isn’t commenting–is 43.  She had been told by an Alexandria midwife practice that delivering a breech baby at home could present complications.  Carr’s attorney said this was her ninth breech delivery last year.

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