Child's future hangs in the balance while court considers question of life support
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Alex Lopez Rosales sat quietly in court as the discussion continued about what will happen to his son.
Police say Rosales admitted hitting the 2-month-old's head against a bathtub on June 24. He told police he tried getting him help a few days later, but medical facilities were asking "too many questions." An arrest report says by the time Isaac Lopez was taken to the hospital by the child's mother on June 29, he was in full arrest. Lopez remains at Kosair Children's Hospital on life support.
"Brain dead is dead under the statute in the state of Kentucky," said Beth McMasters, who is representing Norton Healthcare in court. The hospital says the child should no longer receive medical care, and filed a motion to with Isaac's life support. Monday, Dr. Aaron Calhoun testified about the boy's health.
"Since the day that he was declared dead, we have basically been holding his body in continued existence, for lack of a better term, using pretty much every means at our disposal to keep air going into his lungs, keep the blood circulating, but he is dead, and we are sustaining life, we are only sustaining the appearance in life in a body that has passed away," Calhoun said.
Isaac's mother is fighting to keep the hospital from ending their care."There's no contract between Kosair and the parents or the baby child, the infant child, which would allow them to come to court and even ask the court for an order terminating life support," said attorney Leslie Bates. "Our position is, the mother's position is, they do not have standing."
Isaac's mother has a different attorney than Rosales -- who declined to state a position on the situation in court because of pending criminal charges. An attorney has also been appointed to represent the best interests of the child.
"It's imperative that the court have the authority go forward and that the parties are aligned correctly and that the parties have the authorities do actually do what they're doing," said Judge Judith McDonald Burkman. She made no decision on the matter Monday, but asked attorneys to submit their responses to the proceedings by Friday.
Rosales was also arraigned in court Monday afternoon. His attorney entered a plea of not guilty to 1st-degree criminal abuse. He's due back in court next month.
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