Botched Baptism Drowns Baby

Priest may face charges over 6-month-old's death
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 29, 2010 6:00 AM CDT

A priest who accidentally drowned a baby boy as he baptized him in Moldova may face manslaughter charges. Witnesses said the priest failed to cover the 6-week-old's mouth and nose as he immersed him in water, the Daily Mail reports. The baby suffered breathing difficulties afterward and died 20 minutes later on the way to hospital, where a post mortem found that he had drowned.

"We all saw it, the priest didn't put his hand over the baby's mouth to stop water going in as he should have done and as they do at every other baptism," his father told Romanian media. "The baby was crying as he went into the water," his godmother said. "We couldn't believe it but we thought the priest must know what he's doing, but he didn't. When we got him back there was nothing that could be done anymore." The priest, who told the family he had performed many baptisms, denies responsibility. (More Moldova stories.)

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