A teen mother caught with a dead newborn boy in a shopping bag as she was shoplifting at Victoria Secret in 2013 was charged with his murder on Thursday.Tiona Rodriguez, 18, of Brooklyn, allegedly murdered the infant and shoved it in a bag with the plan to bury it in a hole then eat at I-Hop. Ferrari further claims, “She took steps to get ready, and on Oct. 16, 2013, she woke up and knew that this was the day. She contacted a friend and went to her home in Queens, away from the prying eyes of her friends, her family, her community in Brooklyn. She took a bag with her, and a change of clothes. And she went into her friend’s bathroom, turned on the tub, and gave birth to her baby. Ripping the cord with her bare hands. He wasn’t stillborn, he didn’t die of natural causes.
He was murdered in that bathroom.” The teen mother, from Brooklyn, is thought to have fallen pregnant in early 2013 but believed she would be in “big trouble” if her family found out. Ferrari said Rodriguez planned to kill the infant and “began plotting weeks before he was born”. When she went into labour on October 16, 2013, she went to a friend’s home in Queens where she gave birth in a bath tub “ripping the cord with her bare hands”. The baby boy was full term and weighed 8lbs, prosecutors said. Ferrari added: “He wasn’t stillborn, he didn’t die of natural causes. He was murdered in that bathroom.” Rodriguez is then accused of stuffing the baby’s body into a shopping bag and setting out to dispose of it. But she is believed to have made a detour to Victoria Secret in a bid to steal – stuffing items into the same bag that carried her dead son. Prosecutors revealed Rodriguez had been pregnant twice before and was “well-versed” in hiding her pregnancies and childbirth.
She fell pregnant at 14 and her family only discovered the truth when she was in labour in hospital. Rodriguez gave birth for the second time in 2012, aged 15. She is believed to have delivered the baby in her bathtub at home. Prosecutor Ferrari said: “She may have killed the baby, the baby may have been stillborn – but we know that she texted her boyfriend throughout the birth, ultimately telling him – it’s dead. “Then the two of them discussed via text getting rid of it. Smashing it up, so it didn’t look like a body. Burning it. Meeting up to bury it.”
She told no one after falling pregnant for the third time. Rodriguez’s lawyer Earl Ward argued that both the second and third pregnancies resulted in miscarriages. He said his client was a “confused young girl who had no idea what to do with the fetus that was stillborn”, the Daily News reported. She was ordered held without bail by Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Thomas Farber. She faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted.