Baby boy died while sleeping in a pod on his parents' bed

Baby boy died while sleeping in a pod on his parents' bed


Baby boy born on Christmas Day died at just four months old while sleeping in a pod on his parents’ bed, inquest hears

  • Leonidas Ramsden was found unresponsive at his home in Buckfastleigh, Devon

A baby boy born on Christmas Day died after being placed in a sleeping pod on his parents’ bed, an inquest heard today. 

Little Leonidas Ramsden was just four months old when he was found unresponsive at his home in Buckfastleigh, Devon, on April 28 last year. 

A hearing on Thursday was told he had been ‘fed and placed in a sleeping pod upstairs on his parents’ bed before being found unresponsive some hours later.

There are no suspicious circumstances and a post mortem could not ascertain the cause of death.

It is not yet known what type or brand of sleeping pod Leonidas was placed in on the night he died. 

Little Leonidas Ramsden (pictured) was found unresponsive at his home in Buckfastleigh, Devon, on April 28 last year, at just over four months old.

Four years before his death in 2017, Tesco and Mothercare were among a string of British retailers to stop selling the products due to safety concerns. 

They are still widely available on Amazon.  

In a previous warning to parents, children’s charity the Lullaby Trust wrote in an open letter: ‘Items such as cushioned sleeping pods, nests, baby hammocks, cot bumpers, pillows, duvets and anything that wedges or straps a baby in place can pose a risk to babies under 12 months. 

‘Evidence shows that sleeping a baby on anything but a firm, flat surface, or using soft, heavy bedding, can increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). 

How should my baby sleep? 

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has previously told parents they should follow this guidance:

  • Best place for an infant to sleep is on a firm, flat surface such as that in a crib;
  • Parents and caregivers should use a fitted sheet only and never add blankets, pillows, padded crib bumpers or other items;
  • Infants should always be placed to sleep on their back;
  • Infants who fall asleep in an inclined or upright position should be moved to a safe sleep environment. 

Source: Consumer Product Safety Commission.

‘They can lead to overheating or potentially obstruct a baby’s airway if they roll or their face becomes covered by loose bedding.’ 

A spokesperson for The Lullaby Trust previously said: ‘As a SIDS charity, we have watched with concern as products that go against safer sleep advice gain popularity. 

‘It is hard for parents when they are trying to choose from the overwhelming number of baby products on offer and many people make the reasonable assumption that if an item is sold on the high street or made by a recognised brand it is safe for their baby.’ 

Leonadis’s young mother Akita wrote a heart-wrenching appeal for funds to help pay for a memorial in the wake of her son’s death last year.  

She said: ‘We are devastated and lost, feeling stuck in a reality that shouldn’t exist. We will never feel complete again.

‘I’m 21 years old. I have made two perfect, beautiful children. My daughter Azaylea and my son Leonidas-Aurelius . We fell in love the moment I met them…

‘Our son Leonidas-Aurelius was 4 months and 3 days old when he rolled over in the middle of the night while his family slept. He didn’t cry.. he didn’t wake up.. he just slipped away in his sleep with small sweet smile on his face.

‘The moment me and my partner woke from a couple hours napping. We had to face the most reality shattering and horrific realisation… that Leonidas-Aurelius, the perfect soul had left the beautiful vessel we had created.’ 

She added: ‘Leo had the most beautiful low tones to his voice and he loved the sound of it.. he was always showing off his lovely cooing sounds but most of all he loved to roar. 

‘When you held his hands he would hold on and lift himself into the air… Always smiling and holding his head high. He was such a beautiful sight… 4 months and 3 days of showering him in love and kisses was the best moments of my life.’ 

A full inquest will be held a later date. 

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