A newborn baby was stolen from a hospital by a Russian woman who faked her own pregnancy and lied about having suffered a still birth to enter the postnatal ward and kidnap a stranger’s newborn baby. The moment that the baby was stolen was captured on CCTV, and the chilling video footage shows the baby’s kidnapper walk past hospital staff dragging a large bag along the floor, briefly moving out of sight then walking back through the camera frame and out of the hospital with a baby in her arms.
The baby was stolen by 23-year-old Russian medical student Yekaterina M, who entered the postnatal ward of a Belgorod hospital on Thursday morning, set her sights on a premature newborn baby girl, removed her feeding tube, and brazenly took the baby out of the ward and to her home. The baby’s real mother, also 23, had been discharged from the hospital only hours earlier, but the premature baby girl was required to stay under close observation in the postnatal ward.
A couple standing nearby appear to register the baby as she is being stolen. Oblivious to the unnerving truth of the situation, they smile as the woman leaves the hospital lobby with the baby in her arms.
Initial reports such as RT’s suggested that the baby was stolen from the hospital by the woman out of grief and desperation; severe trauma arising from still births or infant deaths from complications during pregnancy is an unfortunate but common presence in an obstetrics ward.
“The woman is now facing criminal charges related to kidnapping a minor and is reportedly due to undergo a medical examination. It is thought she may have attempted the kidnapping after the death of her own child,” reported RT yesterday.
These reports have been refuted by local news outlets, including Bloknot, which investigated the veracity of any claim that the woman who stole the baby had given birth in the region.
“… the deputy governor of the Belgorod region, Elena Batanova, denied the information. According to her, the thief did not give birth in health facilities in the area,” explained Bloknot.
It wasn’t long before authorities were alerted to the fact that a baby had been stolen, and the woman’s parents and friends — to whom she had lied about being pregnant with her own baby — were some of the first to notify police, according to Nine News.
“Police and hospital staff initially believed the real baby’s family had snuck the newborn out early, but before they had started a wider investigation, the kidnapper’s family had already grown suspicious and reported her,” reports Nine News.
Their suspicion was rightfully raised; after the baby was stolen from the hospital, Yekaterina posted a photo of herself with the baby girl with the caption “Everything will be cool.” Authorities also reported that the young woman had conceived a plan long before the baby was stolen, having found a cot, stroller, and baby clothes ready for an infant at her home nearby the hospital. If she is deemed fit to stand for trial, Yekaterina M. could serve a lengthy prison sentence.
The baby stolen from the hospital by the woman in Russia has been returned to her mother and is in a stable condition, expected to make a full recovery. The girl’s fate lies firmly in her biological mother’s hands, a far cry from the fate met by baby Zephany Nurse, stolen as a newborn from a Capetown hospital and raised by her kidnapper for 17 years.
[Photo by Julie Phipps/Shutterstock]