Colorado

Jun 8, 2010 12:30 PM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

Autism considered motive in Colorado baby killing

Police say a Colorado mom accused of killing her infant son did it because the boy showed signs of autism and she thought his condition would "ruin" her life.

Stephanie Rochester, 34, was charged Monday with murder in the June 1 suffocation death of her 6-month-old son, Rylan. According to an affidavit seeking her arrest, Rochester was motivated by signs the boy had autism. The affidavit says that Rochester wanted to commit suicide, but didn't want to "burden her husband" with the potentially autistic boy.

Rochester told police that she had worked with autistic children and believed her son had the condition.

Pediatricians said Rylan was progressing normally.

Rochester is being held on suicide watch.

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