Nova Scotia

Baby's death sparked police insensitivity, family says

A Nova Scotia family says police treated them poorly after their infant daughter died suddenly.

Parents questioned as infant rushed to hospital

The Paradis family hopes they can spare other families the treatment they say they received. (CBC)

A Nova Scotia family says police treated them poorly after their infant daughter died suddenly.

Mike and Kayla Paradis of Windsor lost their daughter Chloe six weeks ago. She was just seven weeks old.

Kayla found her daughter lying lifeless. "There's something wrong. I turned around and I saw that there was blood on the sheets and her eyes looked really dark, I guess from lack of oxygen or something. But when I left her in the morning she was fine," she said.

She woke her husband.

"He went in and tried to wake her up. He was holding her and he was telling her, ‘Wake up, wake up.’  And then we called the police," Kayla Paradis said Monday.

"I was just rocking her and just hoping that everything would be fine," Mike Paradis said. "I know I tried to wake her up. I tried my hardest. I opened up one of her eyes to see, to wake her up. And it wouldn't happen."

Police confront parents

Emergency crews were at the home within minutes. Medics whisked Chloe off to hospital. Police confronted the parents.

"They didn't ask us to go in the ambulance or to have an escort with the police to get to the hospital. They just left without me or Mike," she said. "Then they questioned me on my deck for about an hour. What happened? How did you find her? This and that."

Eventually Marlene Belliveau, Mike’s mother, arrived and intervened.

"I was told by the officer that the kids were not … nobody was going anywhere until statements were taken.  I got very upset," Belliveau said. "I said, 'No, sorry.' I told the kids to get in the truck, we were going to the hospital."

Doctors told the family there was nothing they could do. Chloe was gone. The police were not.

"We went in the room and there was an officer there. Chloe was in behind a curtain on a bed.  We went in and saw her. The officer was on the other side of the curtain and he would not leave. He was just standing there with all his paperwork," Mike Paradis said.

'Crime scene' house

Police told them their house was considered a crime scene and the family was not allowed inside for 13 hours.

Kayla said her other daughter was in her diaper, but police wouldn’t allow them inside to get clothing for the toddler.

"They wouldn't let us get clothes, shoes, nothing. I asked them if they could reach in my front door to grab my car keys or something. My wallet, my keys, the girls' diapers," she said.

The police would not, she said.

The couple say they've since had no explanation from police.

"I hope that, God forbid, another young couple or anybody, for that matter, ever have to lose a child, I hope to God that they don't ever have to deal with what Kayla and I have dealt with," Mike said.

The Paradis family said the autopsy showed Chloe appeared to be healthy.

The Paradis family has not filed an official complaint, but say they want answers. RCMP told CBC News they would respond Tuesday.