Baby Decapitation Suit Filed Against Atlanta Hospital
On July 9, 2023, Jessica Ross and Treveon Taylor Sr. rushed to Southern Regional Medical Center in Riverdale for the delivery of their baby. However, Treveon Isiah Taylor Jr.’s birth has ended with a lawsuit against the hospital for allegedly decapitating their baby during delivery.
Jessica Ross was fully dilated and physicians instructed her to begin pushing. When the baby stopped descending, Dr. Tracey St. Julian reportedly attempted to deliver the baby vaginally with different methods, including applying traction to the head. Dr. St. Julian then performed a Cesarean section. The baby’s body and legs were delivered via the Cesarean section, but the baby’s head was delivered vaginally.
The hospital staff allegedly did not tell Ross or her family about their baby’s condition. The Ross family claims that the hospital discouraged the parents from seeking an autopsy, as a free autopsy was not an option under the circumstances. Instead, hospital staff allegedly encouraged the couple to have their son cremated. When Ross and Taylor demanded to hold their baby, he was wrapped in a blanket to keep his head propped on his body to conceal the decapitation.
It wasn’t until the baby was delivered to the funeral home that they were informed about their child’s decapitation.
The family filed a lawsuit alleging that Dr. St. Julian had “grossly negligently applied excessive traction on Treveon Isiah Taylor Jr.’s head and neck and grossly negligently failed to do a Cesarean section in a timely and proper manner resulting in Treveon Isiah Taylor Jr.’s decapitation and death.” Several nurses were also accused of gross negligence because they reportedly did not follow proper procedures once it was determined that a shoulder dystocia had occurred.
The lawsuit seeks damages for emotional distress and compensation for the baby’s life, including loss of enjoyment of life and loss of earnings.
Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor or other medical professional mismanages, misdiagnoses, or mistreats a patient, resulting in an injury to that patient. Medical malpractice enables an injured patient to bring a claim against a medical professional who provides negligent medical care.
Shoulder Dystocia is a known condition where the baby’s shoulders become stuck in the birth canal. Ross and Taylor allege that Dr. St. Julian used “excess force” such that the boy’s head and neck were broken and came apart on the way out. The lawsuit further alleges that Dr. St. Julian should have made C-section delivery when the couple requested it. Dr. St. Julian is liable for medical malpractice is a jury determines that a reasonable doctor would have delivered the baby competently.
The couple alleges that they didn’t know their baby’s head had separated from his body until the funeral home informed them. If this is true, the hospital nurses would also potentially be liable for failing to disclose their child’s condition. Patients have a right to know their own medical condition so that they can make the best decision for their health. Medical professions should not be hiding, or even worse concealing, a patient’s condition, no matter how bad the situation might be. Even if Dr. St. Julian performed as any other doctor would have, Ross and Taylor had a right to know the worst of it.
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If a loved one has died because of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you should contact a skilled personal injury attorney. They will be able to determine whether you have a valid claim, what the laws of your state are that pertain to the action, and can represent you in court.