Babysitter accused of poisoning 2 babies denies feeding them her medications

Sa'adiah Jamari is accused of two counts of administering poisons to the babies with the intention of hurting them.
Sa'adiah Jamari is accused of two counts of administering poisons to the babies with the intention of hurting them.ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

SINGAPORE - A babysitter accused of poisoning two baby girls under her care in separate incidents denied in a district court on Tuesday (July 14) that she had fed any of her medications to the children.

Sa'adiah Jamari also told the court that she had been prescribed some of the drugs which were later found in the two babies.

The 39-year-old Singaporean is accused of two counts of administering poisons to the babies with the intention of hurting them.

One of the infants was just five months old at the time, while the other was 11 months old. They are not related to each other.

Taking the stand on the sixth day of her trial, Sa'adiah said she had been prescribed with diazepam and alprazolam, which are used to treat anxiety disorders.

It was not mentioned in court why she was prescribed the drugs.

On Tuesday, the court heard that at the time of the alleged offences, she also had chlorpheniramine, an antihistamine, in her Hougang flat.

Traces of these three substances had been detected in both babies.

She had also been prescribed with the sleeping drug zolpidem. This drug had been found in only the younger baby.

The court heard that other substances, including another sleeping drug temazepam, had also been found in the two babies.

When examined by defence lawyer Chua Eng Hui, she told District Judge John Ng that she did not recognise these other drugs and denied giving them to the girls.

 

Sa'adiah, who has two daughters, testified that she took care of the younger baby and the child's then five-year-old sister in her flat between November and December 2016.

She told Judge Ng that during the sixth session, the baby had a fever and was "very cranky".

Sa'adiah added the child looked better but was still "a bit weak" when she took care of her again the next day.

The nanny also said she last cared for the baby on Dec 9 that year and did not see her again after that.

Sa'adiah told the court that there were occasions when she bought items for the two siblings, including a swing for the older girl, but never asked their mother to compensate her.

She told Judge Ng: "I love the children."

The girls' mother had earlier testified that her baby was found to be "very drowsy" and "cranky" after leaving Sa'adiah's flat.

The 29-year-old mother added that the child was then hospitalised for several days.

 
 
 

The woman later alerted the police after receiving a hospital report listing a range of drugs detected in her daughter.

On Tuesday, Sa'adiah told the court that she took care of the older baby in December 2016.

The older baby's mother, 22, testified in February that she needed somebody to look after her child on Christmas evening and took her daughter to Sa'adiah's flat.

The mother added that her boyfriend picked up the baby at around 6am the next day and she then noticed that her infant seemed "tired".

The baby was taken to KK Women's and Children's Hospital and admitted.

A urine sample taken from the child was later found to contain substances including alprazolam and diazepam. She was discharged on Jan 1, 2017.

Both mothers cannot be named due to a gag order to protect their children's identities.

Sa'adiah is now out on bail of $10,000 and her trial will resume on Wednesday.

For each charge of causing hurt with poisons, an offender can be jailed for up to 10 years and fined or caned. Sa'adiah cannot be caned as she is a woman.