Unlicensed Nebraska midwife Angela ‘Angee’ Hock who ran illegal home births charged with killing baby during child birth involving mother, Emily Noe.
Angela M. Hock, 36, ran a website called the Nebraska Birth Keeper where she called herself a midwife and a ‘natural undisturbed home birth advocate’ – this despite the woman not having any medical certification or license in the state to practice.
Angee Hock was arrested after she failed to safely deliver 25-year-old Emily Noe‘s baby in Omaha on June 15.
Paramedics were called to a home and found Hock and a pregnant woman in a bathroom. Hock was trying to deliver the baby in the breech position, which means the infant’s bottom or feet was coming out first instead of head first, according to KETV.
Nebraska state law prohibits home births, even with a licensed midwife.
Angee Hock attempted delivery without medical assistance:
Medics then watched Hock perform a medical procedure in an attempt to deliver the child. A second woman was also there assisting with the birth, according to court documents cited by the Omaha World-Herald.
The baby was them taken to Nebraska Medicine hospital and was delivered on the way by a medic.
According to the affidavit the baby ‘had no respiration or pulse.’
Doctors said the newborn had been ‘deprived of oxygen for approximately 10 to 12 minutes during the time that Hock attempted this delivery without medical assistance.’
The lack of oxygen caused life-threatening swelling in the baby’s brain and the death as deemed ‘preventable had appropriate medical care been provided in a timely manner.’
Emily and Crayton Noe: ‘We are strong but this hurts so much.’
Noe said that she knew the baby was breech for a couple of hours and had been pushing and trying to deliver the baby before 911 was contacted.
The baby was named Vera and was put on life support, which was pulled two days later on June 17.
Noe said that her water broke on June 14 and Hock arrived to aid in the delivery nine hours later.
Noe and her husband Crayton Noe paid Hock somewhere between $3,000 and $4,000 for her services, according to investigators.
Posted Crayton on Facebook following the death of his daughter, ‘She didn’t feel any pain and she was so peaceful … We are strong but this hurts so much.’
‘Vera will never be forgotten,’ he added.
How did an unlicensed Nebraska midwife manage to continue running her business despite it being illegal?
The Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM) say that Hock shouldn’t have called herself a midwife at all as she lacked the medical expertise.
‘She was represented and calls herself a midwife, but isn’t licensed by the state and did not have that training to actually be called a midwife,’ CNM’s Amanda Lura said.
They said that even with nurse training, most midwives would not attempt to deliver a breech baby as it can be dangerous.
‘We would work really hard to get that baby to turn prior to labor or we would call in a physician in that instance,’ Lura said.
Chief Deputy Douglas County Attorney Brenda Beadle says that Hock was aware of the Nebraska state statue that bans home birth.
‘It’s pretty clear that she was aware of that, too, based on some other evidence that we have.’
Hock writes on the Nebraska Birth Keeper website that she started the company in 2017 after first launching her career as a “birth professional” in 2004.
She says she discovered her “calling to help women find their power and ancient wisdom through traditional midwifery” after attending births as a doula in 2013, and currently possesses “knowledge in many birthing techniques.”
Not immediately understood is how Hock was allowed to continue practicing and managed to evade lawmakers and thereby take advantage of unsuspecting parents.
Of note, Hock is married with four children, according to her website.
Hock turned herself in to police on Tuesday and was booked into Douglas County Jail.
She faces a charge of negligent child abuse resulting in the death of a child – which is a felony. If convicted she could face up to 20 years behind bars.
Not immediately understood is how many prior child births Hock had delivered and whether there had also been complications in those instances.
Her bond will be set on Friday.