PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — A 30-year-old woman from Gulfport was arrested on a single manslaughter charge after a 4-month-old child died while in her care Monday, arrest documents revealed.
According to the Gulfport Police Department, 30-year-old Nicole Iannone was co-sleeping with a 4-month-old child tucked in the nook of her left arm when she awoke to find the toddler not breathing.
Authorities said Iannone called 911 but the toddler was pronounced dead less than an hour later.
During an investigation, authorities learned Iannone “had a previous child die approximately 1.5 years ago and was approximately two months old at the time of his death. It was determined that this previous child also died in almost the exact same circumstance while co-sleeping with [Iannone],” the report added.
Officers said Iannone admitted she was informed by doctors and other medical professionals of the dangers of co-sleeping, “but continued to willingly and knowingly co-sleep with [the toddler] even after the consequences of the first child’s death.”
According to advice posted by The American Academy of Pediatrics in 2016, co-sleeping “should be avoided at all times” with a “[full-]term normal-weight infant younger than 4 months.”
The organization says the practice puts babies at risk for sleep-related deaths, including sudden infant death syndrome, accidental suffocation, and accidental strangulation.