NC Women Face Charges After Newborn's Death

Two women have been charged with practicing midwifery without a license after a Charlotte newborn died following an underwater home birth.

Police arrested 43-year-old Mary Barhite and 45-year-old Jacqueline Proffit on Friday. Practicing midwifery without a license is a misdemeanor charge.

Barhite and Profitt were both released on bond. It couldn't be immediately determined Saturday if either has a lawyer.

In North Carolina, midwives must be registered nurses who are certified by the state.

Charlotte police say the women were at a private home last week assisting with an underwater birth, in which the baby is delivered in a tub of warm water. Police say there were complications with the delivery, and the newborn died after being rushed to a local hospital.

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  • by Juanita Location: Plymouth on Dec 26, 2011 at 07:37 PM
    This is really sad. A life has been taking all they get is a slap on the wrist? Where is justice?
  • by CRYSTAL on Dec 26, 2011 at 09:42 AM
    Just a misdimeanor???? WHAT? This was a LIFE lost!!!
  • by Petey Pirate on Dec 26, 2011 at 05:14 AM
    What a sorry sack of
  • by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 05:49 PM
    The fact that this is just a misdeamnor is disturbing.
  • by Lynne Location: Ayden on Dec 25, 2011 at 11:01 AM
    Home birth does not equal home UNDERWATER birth. This baby was not born on a bed, floor, etc. but in a tub of water according to the story. This is not an ancient practice that women have been experiencing for millenia. I am certain there is probably more to this story than is currently being reported. I hope the child's death was a completely unseen accident and not because the adults involved ignored warning signs that this was a case where the child needed to be born in a hospital or the these women bungled the delivery and ultimately caused the child's death. If the child drowned, all involved should be charged. My condolences to the family who have lost their child. May they find peace.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 07:49 AM
    I had to have an emergency caesarean when I had my daughter because her heart rate was going down. Her umbilical cord was in 2 knots. I am thankful I had the opportunity to be at a hospital so that her life could be saved immediately.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 24, 2011 at 09:34 PM
    Although I understand the desire to have a home birth and do no disagree with it, there is a certain amount of research that should be done prior to choosing the correct person to help you with it. Although this practice has been done for thousands of years, we do have knowledge accessible to everyone that allows for more successes than possible in earlier years. This mother should've put her and her child as the priority and found out where to get a legally practicing midwife that could have assisted her in her home birth. This is such a tragedy and I feel for the mother, but it might have been prevented from choosing a midwife better.
  • by Anon Location: Greenville on Dec 24, 2011 at 04:45 PM
    This is actually common for those women who wish to have a home birth. The thing is in NC it's not permissable to practice widwifery without being a Nurse. In other states you can just have a midwifery license. I'm pretty sure that the mother knew that her midwives were illegally practicing. Most women in this group of home birthers are very aware and feel so strongly about having a natural, home birth that they take the risk. The reality is that most countries perform births this way. They shouldn't make a big deal out of a mom wanting to bring her child into the world in her home. How can someone feel so outraged at this incident when there are millions of children murdered in their mother's womb due to abortion. Where is the voice for these babies? It's still unfortunate that the baby died but the baby could have died if delivered in the hospital. We will never know.
  • by 40some on Dec 24, 2011 at 04:27 PM
    This is the third story like this in the last month or so. First was the aging topless dancer that got the injections in her tushie, then the guy that died getting silicone injections in his, well, if you can't figure that one out you don't need to know.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 24, 2011 at 03:48 PM
    The mother chose this.
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