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By Sadef Ali Kully

A licensed practical nurse was charged April 30 with the murder of a 23-month-old female infant after she was caught boarding a Virgin Atlantic flight to Nigeria via London, the Queens District Attorney’s Office announced.

The 23-month-old developmentally disabled child, whom the nurse was hired to care for, died due to complications of scalding, DA Richard Brown said. She had been taken to the hospital several days earlier for scald burns that covered approximately 50 percent of her body, according to the DA.

“The defendant had been trained to heal and save lives – which she is accused of failing to fulfill. The tiny victim suffered extraordinarily painful injuries for several days before she died. This is a terribly sad and tragic case that could have been prevented,” Brown said.

Oluyemisi Adebayo, 54, of 201st St. in St. Albans, has been a licensed practical nurse in New York State since 1998. She is presently awaiting arraignment in Queens Criminal Court on a criminal complaint charging her with second-degree murder, the DA said.

According to the criminal complaint filed by the Queens DA, physicians at Nassau University Medical Center performed surgery on the child in order to treat second- and third-degree immersion scald burns that covered nearly half of her body. The child died three days later and the preliminary findings of an autopsy conducted within 24 hours found the cause of death was complications from burned with scalding water.

Adebayo said she had prepared a bath for the child April 21 and tested the tub water with her hand before placing the child in the baby tub. When Adebayo removed the child from the baby tub, she said she noticed that the child’s skin was falling off her legs, according to the criminal complaint.

Court records said detectives from the NYPD’s Crime Scene Unit performed water temperature tests on the faucet that Adebayo said was used to fill the baby tub. The tests allegedly revealed that the maximum water temperature for the faucet was 130 degrees and that it took approximately 120 seconds for the temperature to reach the maximum level.

According to the criminal complaint, medical personnel said Adebayo’s account of how the child came to be burned was inconsistent with the nature and severity of the injuries. Prosecutors contended the child’s severe injuries indicated she had been submerged up to her waist in 130 degree water for approximately 30 seconds.

Adebayo’s next court appearance is scheduled for May 15, and if convicted, she faces up to 25 years to life in prison.

Reach Reporter Sadef Ali Kully by e-mail at skully@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4546.

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