Related topics

Woman Charged With Killing Newborn 38 Years Ago

September 4, 1989

TROY, N.Y. (AP) _ Decades of guilt forced a woman to confess that she killed her baby and buried the body in her yard 38 years ago, police said.

Marian F. Allen, 68, was charged with second-degree murder after a city work crew dug up a small strongbox wrapped in tape containing an infant’s remains.

Allen had been tormented by guilt and finally ″exploded″ at the knowledge that the baby boy was buried in the garden a few feet from her house, police Capt. Albert Prezio said Sunday.

″She said she hadn’t slept in 38 years,″ said Sgt. John Tedesco.

Allen called police Saturday and told investigators she had smothered the infant and buried him without the knowledge of her husband, George, or their teen-age son, Prezio said. The baby was from an extramarital affair, authorities said.

″The culmination came the other day. She finally had to tell somebody about it,″ Prezio said. ″She could see the grave site. It was only within a few feet from her window where she sat most every day.″

Her family told police Allen had been under psychiatric care for years, Prezio said.

Allen told investigators she buried the infant the day after his birth at home, but investigators did not know exactly when the baby was killed, Prezio said.

An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday.

Allen was arraigned Saturday and by a judge who ordered a psychiatric examination. Allen was being held Sunday night at the Central New York Psychiatric Hospital.

A hearing has been scheduled for Thursday.

Allen’s confession was the first police heard of the infant.

″It wasn’t like an unsolved murder that we had kept open,″ said Sgt. Anthony Magnetto.

The Albany Times Union reported today that a source in the investigation said Allen panicked after giving birth and killed the baby out of fear her husband would find out about her affair.

Allen identified the father as a local man who has since died, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Neighbors said George Allen was well known in the neighborhood, but his wife kept to herself.

″Nobody knew her,″ neighbor Shawn Lavallee said. ″I’ve lived here all my life and never knew her, she was so quiet. I hadn’t seen her in a couple of years before yesterday,″ when she was arrested.

George Allen, his grandson and a neighbor were working with shovels Sunday in the area where the baby’s body was dug up. They refused to comment.

Update hourly