Mother Injured Newborn Baby in Dryer, Previously Sought Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 18, 2012   |   4:36PM   |   Richmond, VA

A Virginia woman at the center of a horrific near-infanticide case was denied bail last week.

UPDATE: This story previously indicated the baby died. We have updated this story to indicate that’s not the case.

Angela Marie Janecka abandoned her newborn baby last month in a dryer had never intended to allow the child to survive after being denied an abortion weeks earlier, according to prosecutors. Janecka had tried to have the baby aborted but was turned down at abortion facilities because she had reached the 20-week limit for an abortion.

The Richmond Times Dispatch has more on this grisly story:

A juvenile court judge refused to release the 39-year-old mother of two, saying that Janecka’s conduct raised questions about her mental state and reliability.

“We don’t know what we’re dealing with,” Oglesby cautioned.

Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Judge Randall Johnson Jr. said he wanted a mental evaluation performed on Janecka and set a court hearing for Nov. 16. Janecka was expressionless and barely spoke during the 20-minute hearing by video as her husband watched silently from the front row of a Henrico courtroom.

Janecka’s lawyer, Nikki M. Clarke, said she will appeal the bond decision to Henrico Circuit Court and stressed that Janecka is eager to see her autistic 8 year-old-son and has privately been remorseful to the point of tears about baby Meghan, whose home birth Aug. 25 apparently occurred in no one else’s presence other than the mother.

Oglesby, as she did last week, reiterated how Janecka’s husband came home to help clean up after the birth, having been told by his wife that a doctor came to the home to assist with the delivery and took the stillborn infant away in a bag.



But Oglesby, describing the physician as “a mystery doctor,” added that Janecka had at first asked that her husband not return home, a request he rejected. He later discovered the infant in the dryer, placed inside a plastic bag and pillow case, as he transferred some clothes from the washer. Police said he thought a moaning sound he heard was the family cat. Even then, the couple left a message asking for help on the answering machine of their son’s pediatrician rather than immediately call 911, Oglesby said.

Angela Marie Janecka is charged with attempted first-degree murder and felony child neglect. She was arrested last week after an intensive investigation in which, authorities say, her story kept changing and her statements did not match medical evidence in the case.