Mother raised her newborn in a filthy car boot for two years to hide secret birth from family causing permanent disability
According to a court officials, Rosa Maria Da Cruz is currently on trial for repeated acts of violence against a minor causing severe development problems
A woman in France, who raised her daughter in the trunk of her car for two whole years which has resulted in irreversible health problems, is currently facing up to 20 years behind bars.
According to a court official at the Palais de Justice in Tulle, Rosa Maria Da Cruz is currently on trial for repeated acts of violence against a minor causing severe development problems.
Express reported that Cruz was in denial the whole time about having a fourth child with her husband and ended up hiding the pregnancy from him and their three other children the entire time. She raised the girl, whom she named Serena, in a basement and then the boot of her car.
The toddler was found in 2013 when a couple of garage mechanics were investigating some strange sounds coming from the trunk of the car. Denis Latour, one of the mechanics at Terrasson garage, told French broadcaster France Info: "I discovered this little girl in the bottom of the trunk, naked, next to a rotten cradle, disgusting. I jumped back so much the smell was strong."
In the report that was made after the baby was found, the mechanics confirmed that the smell coming from the trunk was "evocative of putrefaction" and it was wafting out of the car from the passenger compartment. Along with the toddler were two small plastic toys, a pacifier, and a bottle that the report said was filled with fermented milk.
Latour added that when the firefighters came and took the toddler away, the mother was inside the police car and he approached it to talk to her. He reportedly told her through the window, "Know that tonight, we may have saved your daughter's life". Da Cruz reportedly answered: "Thank you, sir".
The second mechanic, Guillaume Iguacel, commented on the woman's composure on the day that her little secret was finally found. He said: "She was smoking her cigarette, she looked relaxed, not frantic, nothing, calm, calm."
The young father-to-be was also reportedly furious with Da Cruz. He added: "It's been three years since my wife was trying to have a child, so when you see that, you're angry."
Latour confirmed that if he hadn't restrained the young man, Iguacel would have probably hit the mother in rage. Da Cruz is facing upto 20 years behind bars for the charges. Serena, who was not given adequate food or care before, is now seven years old. She lives her life in special care with what her carers believe could be irreversible health problems.