Case Dismissed in Slaying of Deformed Baby

From Associated Press

A judge on Friday dismissed a murder charge against a veterinarian who slammed his newborn son against a delivery room floor seven years ago after realizing the boy had birth defects.

Daniel McKay had been tried twice on the murder charges. Both trials ended in hung juries.

Cook County Circuit Judge Will Gierach on Friday ruled that there was not enough evidence against McKay to sustain the charge of murder in the 1983 slaying in this south Chicago suburb.

“There will be no more trial, it’s over, it’s done,” said McKay’s attorney Jo-Anne Wolfson. She said the state cannot bring her client to trial on a lesser charge.

McKay and his wife, Carol, broke into tears when the judge made his ruling, Wolfson said.


McKay slammed his infant son to the delivery room floor moments after the boy was born with a cleft palate, a harelip and webbed fingers.

His attorneys contended that the child’s terrible condition had driven McKay into a state of temporary insanity. The state argued that the deformities did not excuse the killing.

“Baby McKay did not deserve the fate he met,” Raymond Garza, an assistant state’s attorney, argued at one point in the proceedings. “He was not such a horrible creature that his life deserved to be snuffed out.”

After the two hung juries, the defense moved in November, 1987, for dismissal of the charges. Gierach granted the motion in January, 1988, but the state appealed. The appeals court returned the case to Gierach on a technicality.

The judge’s final dismissal on Friday left McKay, who practices veterinary medicine in Beecher, “absolutely ecstatic,” his attorney said.

The McKays have one child, Amy, 14.