The Chicago community held a prayer vigil on June 7 for the baby who was cut from a young teenage mother’s womb before she was murdered in Chicago, Illinois.
The baby has been battling for his life and was on a life support system for several weeks. The family had to go through a challenging time.
His paternal grandparents were granted an extension on their visa so that they can stay and keep supporting the child’s father, reported Fox32.
🙏🙏SO SAD: baby Yovani’s prognosis remains grim as machines keep him breathing. He has suffered severe brain damage. https://t.co/nUYQx1i1DA
— Dolly Loretta Russo (@dolly19631966) June 8, 2019
Baby Yovani Yadiel Lopez’s family came together in prayer outside the hospital and for the first time, their doctor also joined them.
“We pray for them not only now, but in the many months ahead,” Dr. Brett Galley told Fox32.
Doctors said that when Yovani was cut from his mother’s womb, his oxygen supply had been cut off, causing brain damage.
Baby’s father has been facing the tough choice of whether or not to remove the child from life support. “I feel a lot of pressure, I feel sad,” Yovani Lopez told Fox32.
The family held a funeral for the baby’s mother, Marlen Ochoa-Lopez on May 25.
Ochoa-Lopez was murdered in April. Police said the 19-year-old mother, who was nine months pregnant, was strangled to death and her baby was forcibly removed from her body.
Ochoa-Lopez went missing on April 23 after she was lured to a meeting that had been arranged over Facebook to a Southwest Side home to supposedly pick up free baby items.
Police said that 46-year-old Clarisa Figueroa murdered Ochoa-Lopez and then cut the baby out of her womb.
After cutting the baby out of the 19-year-old mother’s womb, Figueroa then allegedly phoned 911 to say she had just given birth to a baby who wasn’t breathing, according to police.
Paramedics transported Figueroa to the hospital in Oak Lawn, a suburb of Chicago, where she reportedly underwent a physical exam that determined she had not given birth.
Police announced May 16 that three people—Figueroa, her 24-year-old daughter, Desiree Figueroa, and Figueroa’s boyfriend, 40-year-old Piotr Bobak—had been arrested and charged in connection with Ochoa-Lopez’s death.
— CBS Chicago (@cbschicago) May 21, 2019
Officials Not Alerted
Prosecutors said that when Figueroa was brought with the baby to the hospital, she had blood on her upper body and her face, which a hospital employee cleaned off. They also said Figueroa was examined at the hospital and showed no physical signs of childbirth.
Police and Illinois’s child welfare agency said staff at Advocate Christ Medical Center didn’t alert them after finding that Figueroa did not give birth to the baby boy as she claimed.
On May 18, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services spokesman Jassen Strokosch said that the agency had been alerted on May 9 that there were questions about who had custody of the child in order to make medical decisions. He said he couldn’t speculate about why the agency wasn’t contacted sooner.
“We don’t know what was happening at the hospital,” he said.
Mimi Nguyen Ly and The Associated Press contributed to this report.