Two-Month-Old Baby in Area's 5th Possible Co-Sleeping Death
MILWAUKEE- The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner hasn’t determined how 2-month old Meekel McCleave died, but his mother told investigators they were sharing a bed early Sunday morning and she awoke to find him face down and unresponsive.
If confirmed to be co-sleeping, it would be the 5th baby to die due to co-sleeping in Milwaukee in the last 10 weeks.
It was another tragedy for a Milwaukee family. Meekel McCleave died Sunday morning, just two months into his short life.
“I think it’s tragic,” said Donelle Washington, who lives not far from 21st and Atkinson, where the baby died.
“I’m a firm believer of the baby in the crib. Because a lot of parents, they work all day, they hold the baby, fall asleep, and things happen,” Washington said.
There were hugs and tears at the family’s home Sunday morning as police investigated. Meekel’s mother told investigators she went to a wedding Saturday night and returned home around 1am Sunday morning. She said she had a few drinks, but she didn’t feel drunk.
She says she slept in her bed with her 2-month old son, as she’s done with her other children for years without any problems. But this time, Meekel didn’t wake up.
The City of Milwaukee Health Department is trying to discourage parents from co-sleeping with their babies. But some think the message isn’t being received.
“Parents are going to do what they want to do regardless,” said Donelle Washington.
There is one point of dispute in the Medical Examiner’s report. Investigators say they found the baby face down on an adult size pillow. Meekel’s mother says there was no pillow and she put the baby on his back when they went to bed. More details are expected to be released on Monday.
On March 8, 6-day old Ceianna Buchanan died while sleeping on a couch with her mother. The mother admitted to police she got drunk the night before.
On April 5, 3-month old Kymarius Hunt died sleeping on a couch with his grandmother. She later admitted to drinking 8 beers.
On April 19, 2-month old Tyler Winston died sharing a bed with his mother.
On April 25, 6-week old Demetrius Kimble died sleeping in bed with both parents. His mother admitted to drinking prior to falling asleep.