THE BRONX — The mother charged with throwing her newborn daughter out of a seventh story University Heights window told investigators she went back to job hunting minutes after giving birth, according to her confession.
"I put a sanitary pad on and went into the living room and went back on the computer. I was looking for jobs again," Jennifer Berry told police. "About 20 minutes later, the police were knocking at my door."
Berry appeared in court on Tuesday dressed in a tan jumpsuit and pleaded not guilty at her arraignment on charges of murder and manslaughter.
Berry also said she had gotten an abortion six months before giving birth and initially told police officers and medical professionals that she was not pregnant, according to court papers.
She's accused of killing her infant daughter by dropping her out of a seventh-floor window on Sept. 28, the same day the child was born, and claimed in court papers to not know that she was pregnant.
Berry told police she started having cramps on the morning of Sept. 28 and went to the bathroom in her boyfriend's apartment to fill the tub with water.
"I felt a lot of pressure and the baby came out," she said. "The baby was grayish. I don't know if the baby was breathing. I would say 'no' because of what I observed."
She cradled the baby for about two minutes before dropping her out of the window, rinsing out the tub and going back out into the living room, court papers say.
Berry told police that she threw the baby out of the window because she did not have a job and did not think she could financially support a child.
She had the baby with her boyfriend, but he did not know that she had thrown her out of the window, Berry told police.
"I got my period regularly. I gained a little weight, but I have a thyroid problem," she told police.
She blamed the blood around her crotch on heavy menstruation and refused medical attention when she got to St. Barnabas Hospital on Sept. 28, police said.
However, after asking a police officer at the hospital for advice, she agreed to get medical treatment and said she had thrown her baby out of the window, she stated in her confession.
Berry is due back in court on Jan. 12 and could face life in prison if convicted. Her lawyer said she had been receiving threats in the wake of her arrest.
Berry previously lost a baby boy in 2008 in her hometown of Yonkers, and although the medical examiner for Westchester County ruled at the time that he had died of natural causes, prosecutors in the county have said they will now reexamine this case.