10 Years For Baby-Dump Mom
A 29-year-old Woodside woman was sentenced last week to 10 years in prison for tossing her newborn daughter into a hospital trash can a year ago.
Dawa Lama pleaded guilty to manslaughter in April and admitted to tossing the baby into a trash can in an Emergency Room bathroom at Elmhurst Hospital Center.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said Lama went to the hospital seeking prenatal care and went to the bathroom after experiencing pain in her abdomen. She gave birth to the baby inside the hospital bathroom shortly before 2:50 p.m. on May 10, 2011 and left the infant clinging to life in the trash can.
Police tracked down Lama through hospital video surveillance and found her, sleeping at her apartment on 65th Street at about 5:20 p.m. the same day. Lama was charged with assault, reckless endangerment, child abandonment and endangering the welfare of a child.
A hospital spokesperson said an emergency room worker discovered the full-term baby moments after Lama left the hospital and immediately alerted medical personnel. The baby was stabilized and transferred to Long Island Jewish Hospital.
Lama’s boyfriend, Bishnu Gurung, 28, denied, at the time, any knowledge of the pregnancy, but assumed full responsibility for the baby after her birth and kept vigil at the LIJH neonatal intensive care unit where the baby was treated, authorities said.
The baby, who was named Mingmar Gurung, was kept on life support for one week before she passed away.
Under New York state law, within five days of its birth, “a parent may anonymously surrender an unwanted newborn infant to personnel in a safe place – such as a hospital, a police station or a fire station – without repercussions,” Brown said.