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Legal Dictionary

neonaticide

Legal Definition of neonaticide

Related terms


Definition of neonaticide

Noun

neonaticide (countable and uncountable; plural neonaticides)

  1. The murder of a newborn.

Further reading

Neonaticide is the killing of a newborn infant less than 24 hours old. It can be divided into criminal neonaticide, which is usually by a mother under severe psychological stress, and customary neonaticide, a practice used in certain cultures at certain times to limit the population.

Neonaticide is rare in developed countries, when it does occur, it is most often the mother that kills the neonate; it is an exceptionally rare event amongst fathers.

Maternal Neonaticide

Neonaticidal mothers are generally between 16 and 38 years of age with almost 90% being 25 years of age or younger. Less than 20% are married. Less than 30% are seen as psychotic or depressed unwed, poor, and have denied and/or concealed the pregnancy since conception. They frequently give birth alone and dispose of the baby as an abortion that occurs "too late."

References:

  1. Wiktionary. Published under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.



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