Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Baby suffers "brain shift" during visitation with dad, dies in hospital (Staten Island, New York)

Not clear if the visitation was court-ordered custody time. But it doesn't really matter, as young mothers are under tremendous pressure to "involve" the father, even if their relationship didn't survive the pregnancy.

Dad is identified as THEODORE RICKS.


Mom 'wants justice' after baby's death is ruled homicide

By Maura Grunlund on June 06, 2016 at 8:09 PM, updated June 06, 2016 at 8:15 PM

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- Little Morgan Ricks was born premature, but the 3-month-old had been doing well since her birth, the child's mother said Monday.

"Even though she was a premie, she was still gaining her weight," said Shanera Flicklin.

But things suddenly turned tragic on Aug. 30, when the child was found unresponsive in an apartment at 81 Jersey St. in the Richmond Terrace Houses, New Brighton, police said.

The NYPD launched an investigation into Morgan's death after a physician told cops that night that the child had suffered a "brain shift" and bleeding to her brain while in the care of a family member, police said at the time.

Morgan Ricks, a 3-month-old girl hospitalized on Aug. 29, died Friday. A doctor told police she suffered a "brain shift" while in a family member's care on Staten Island, cops said.

On Friday, the city medical examiner ruled the child's death a homicide caused by "abusive head trauma." The determination came nearly 10 months after she died on Sept. 11 at Richmond University Medical Center in West Brighton.

Police have yet to make any arrests.

A law enforcement source with knowledge of the investigation said the child was with her father the night of the incident, but could not say if anyone else was in the apartment with them.

A woman at the apartment, who identified herself as a relative of Morgan's father, Theodore Ricks, said Ricks was not at the apartment Monday night.

On Monday, the child's mother tearfully discussed that fateful day.

Flicklin said she dropped Morgan off at the infant's father's home around 3 p.m. Aug. 30.

When she went to pick her up five hours later, "She wasn't responding to me," Flicklin said.

Morgan was stiff when Flicklin picked her up.

Flicklin opened the infant's eyelids and said her pupils were still; she had drool on her face.

"I had to pry her mouth open," the mother said, adding that she called for the ambulance.

Medical staff at Richmond University were able to briefly revive Morgan -- "She opened her eyes, she was crying" -- before the baby slipped into a coma, Flicklin said.

"I just want justice," Flicklin said of the tragedy.