Dirty diapers, faeces and bottles with maggots: Babies found in horror squalor

Erika Murray
Erika Murray. Photo credit: Reuters

Warning: The article contains content that may disturb some people.

The gruesome details of a house where the bodies of three dead babies were discovered have been described by a neighbour in court.

Erika Murray, 35, from Massachusetts was charged with two counts of murder in 2014 following the discovery of the remains of her babies by her neighbour Betsy Brown.

Brown told the Worcester Superior Court that the interior of Murray's home was unbearable.

"I could hear the crying, screaming, babies crying... you could clearly hear children in distress."

Brown was asked to go to the house by the 10-year-old son of Murray who asked for help getting one of those babies to stop crying.

The conditions the family lived in were also horrific. Brown described the smell inside as "overcoming, I can't even describe it, it was a horrible, horrible smell, there was trash and stuff everywhere, you really couldn't see the floor".

Dirty diapers, bottles with maggots in them and children covered in faeces and urine were listed by Brown as she recounted her experience to the court.

Prosecutor Christopher Hodgens said that police who later arrived at the house found a five-month-old baby on a bed and toddler "rocking violently" on another.

"Those children had never seen the light of day," Hodgens said. "They had never seen a doctor, they had never been immunised for anything. They had impaired development."

However, those discoveries were just the beginning of what turned out to be a gruesome ordeal for investigating police.

Among the squalor of the home, the bodies of three infants were found. Prosecutors described how a state trooper went upstairs and opened a closet to find a dead baby with its placenta still attached.

Near the infant was a dead dog in a bag and a second dead baby that was "diapered and fully clothed, but they were skeletal remains". The skeletal remains of another baby was also found nearby.

Murray's defence lawyer Keith Halpern claims there is no evidence his client committed a crime and that she is mentally ill. She has plead not guilty.

"There is no evidence that Ms. Murray did anything wrong or criminal to cause the death of any child," said Halpern.

Meanwhile, the father of the children, 39-year-old Ramon Rivera, is currently facing child abuse charges.

His lawyer filed a motion in August 2016 to dismiss the charges since he allegedly never had custody of the two neglected children found in the house.

However, prosecutors opposed it saying he fathered the kids and DNA testing later confirmed his paternity.


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