Couple charged in infant's death under order of no contact
The young couple charged with aggravated assault in the death of theirinfant daughter was ordered by a judge yesterday not to have anycontact with each other.
The young couple charged with aggravated assault in the death of their infant daughter was ordered by a judge yesterday not to have any contact with each other.
Ashiqur Rahman and Jane Gomes, both 23, once again chose to stay in holding cells during their second court appearance since their seven-week-old baby girl died on July 27, three days after being taken to the IWK Health Centre with life-threatening injuries.
Their lawyers spoke on their behalves at provincial court, where the case has been delayed again until Sept. 2 as the two accused continue to seek legal advice. In the meantime they will remain in jail.
Orders of no contact are common in situations where multiple people are charged in the same crime.
“The reason is so that the persons don’t have an opportunity to speak to one another and in any way hamper the prosecution of the matter or the investigation,” Crown prosecutor Denise Smith said after yesterday’s court proceedings.
Both accused consented to being remanded to jail, though they could make a bail application next month. Legal aid lawyers John Black and Lyle Elkins are representing Rahman and Gomes respectively until they retain permanent defence lawyers.
The charges have not been upgraded from aggravated assault since the child’s death. Smith said the investigation is ongoing and the charges will not be altered until it concludes.
Rahman and Gomes, both from Bangladesh and staying in Canada on student visas, had studied computer science at Acadia University in Wolfville before moving to Halifax.
The couple was living above the Good Food Emporium on Gottingen Street when they called 9-1-1 the night of July 24 reporting their baby was seriously injured. They were arrested and charged the next day with aggravated assault. The child died three days later.
When asked by reporters yesterday if there were any new developments in the investigation, Smith replied, “nothing I can tell you.”