Chicago Mom and Daughter Charged with Murder After Baby Boy Ripped From Slain Woman's Womb Dies
Clarisa Figueroa, 46, and Desiree Figueroa, 24, were charged with the murder of newborn baby Yovanny Lopez
Clarisa Figueroa, 46, and Desiree Figueroa, 24, were charged with the murder of newborn baby Yovanny Lopez, PEOPLE confirms. They appeared in bond court on Thursday.
The two women previously pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, aggravated kidnapping and aggravated battery in the April 23 killing of the baby’s mother, 19-year-old Marlen Ochoa-Lopez.
Authorities allege that the women posted in a Facebook group for young mothers, saying they were giving away clothes and a stroller. When Ochoa-Lopez arrived at their home, authorities say, the women strangled her before removing the baby from her womb.
The baby, Yovanny Jadiel Lopez, spent his short life on support machines with severe brain damage. In June, he died in his father Yovany Lopez’s arms, according to a statement from Julie Contreras, a spokeswoman for the family. He was just 51 days old.
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The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office announced the baby’s cause of death was lack of oxygen and blood to his brain and a prolapse of the umbilical cord and placenta due to a maternal assault and demise.
Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told reporters in April that the suspects wanted to “raise the child as their own” after Clarisa Figueroa allegedly faked a pregnancy, then called 911 on April 23 — the day the victim was last seen — to claim she’d just delivered a boy who was struggling to breathe.
Investigators found that Clarisa Figueroa showed no signs of having delivered a child. They eventually found Ochoa-Lopez’s body in a garbage can in the Figueroas’ yard.
A third person, Desiree’s boyfriend Piotr Bobak, 40, has also been charged for his alleged involvement, and faces one felony count of concealment of a homicide.
Frank Avila, an attorney representing the family, addressed media shortly after the baby’s death, reports ABC 7.
“The baby did not just die, the baby was murdered and we demand justice. The baby did die of natural causes, of course, but natural causes that were inflicted by the brain injury caused from the asphyxiation of his mother. That was a murder and murder charges should be brought,” Avila said.
PEOPLE was unable to reach attorneys who might speak on the suspects’ behalf. They have pleaded not guilty to all charges.