November 29, 2008 at 7:42 Trevor James Ulrich came into the world. He was 7 weeks early but still 5 lbs 4oz! Trevor was taken to the NICU at Mercy Hospital in Baltimore where he would spend 3 ½ weeks. When Trevor came home he grew so fast. He was healthy and very, very happy.
August 31, 2009 was Trevor’s first day at Ms. Dobson’s Daycare. I chose Ms. Dobson for many reasons – I had known her for over 20 years, she was close to my work, she had watched my cousin’s child and because she had a good reputation. I dropped Trevor off around 7:45. I called and checked on him twice that day. After school I had a meeting to attend so my mother went to pick him up. When she got there Trevor was asleep in Ms. Dobson’s arms. When my mother took him and placed him in the car seat he began to vomit. He vomited 2 more times before I came to pick him up. When I got to my mother’s to pick him up Trevor was not Trevor, he was lethargic and somewhat limp. I called a nurse from his pediatrician’s office and she advised me to take him to the ER. That night he was treated for a stomach virus and released.
September 1, 2009 my mother stayed home to take care of Trevor. He was still not the usual Trevor but we assumed he was getting over this “bug”.
September 2, 2009 I took Trevor back to Ms. Dobson’s daycare. I called twice that day to check on him. Each time I called she told me how wonderful he was and that he was napping. I had just spent all summer with Trevor and he was not much of a napper so I wasn’t sure why he was napping so much at her house. Then at 3:00 my life completely changed. I was buzzed by the office to take a phone call from Ms. Dobson. When I got to the phone she told me that Trevor was sick. She said he wasn’t breathing and that he had aspirated on his vomit. She also said that she was about to call 911. I ran to my classroom and got my keys and headed to her house. I arrived at the same time the local ambulance did. When I went into her house Trevor was on the floor and Ms. Dobson was performing CPR. The paramedics soon arrived and Trevor was taken to Easton Memorial Hospital. I didn’t know it at the time but Trevor was in full cardiac arrest.
When I arrived at the hospital I was escorted to where they were working on him. They had just gotten his heart to start beating again but he still wasn’t breathing on his own. My husband and I sat there in shock as we watched the many doctors and nurses take care of our precious baby. After what seemed like forever, we were told that they were going to fly Trevor to Children’s Hospital in DC. I kept hoping for the best but my maternal instincts were telling me something was not right.
When we got to Children’s hospital we were put in a room where we had to wait for doctors to update us on Trevor’s progress. It was then that we heard that Trevor was terminal. The doctor’s said that he a 0% chance of a full recovery and that if he did pull through he would never be able to walk or talk or even know who we are. They advised us that because of his injuries, they would be contacting social services and there would be a full investigation into what happened. There were 2 things I knew for certain…. I didn’t do this and neither did my husband. I didn’t want to believe that Ms. Dobson did it either. So I did what I had to do to get through the next few days, I told myself that it was an accident, that Trevor was shaken in efforts to revive him from aspirating. I later found out that Trevor’s lungs were CLEAR….he had never aspirated.
That night was a very long night. There were so many tubes and wires. Our precious angel was in a neck brace and he was so cold. His eyes were lifeless and his little hands didn’t wrap around my finger like they once had.
September 3, 2009 was a very long and very heart-wrenching day. We were told that Trevor was brain dead and that we had a choice to make. We called in friends and family to come say their goodbyes. There were so many doctors and so many tests that were done that day. We had to watch as they took pictures and scans of his eyes. I was shocked at how much blood there was. I remember feeling where his soft spot once was it was now hard from the pressure of his swelling brain. I knew it deep down that something happened to him but I just couldn’t bear to think about it at that moment.
When family and friends had said their good bys Dominic and I were “ready” to say ours. However we had to wait because investigators were there to ask us questions about Trevor. There were so many emotions running through me. I felt as though we were being accused of doing this to our baby.
At 7:33 surrounded by family and being held by his mommy and daddy, Trevor was taken off life support and pronounced dead. My life had completely changed. My husband and I no longer had our healthy happy baby. We couldn’t even donate his organs to save others since we had to have an autopsy.
After the burial and memorial service were over, we were left feeling empty, hurt, confused and angry. It was later when we were told that Trevor’s cause of death was trauma (shaken baby) and that timeline showed that Ms. Dobson was responsible.
On October 22nd Ms. Dobson was arrested and charged with 11 counts of child abuse and manslaughter. The community was shocked by the news. There were people that couldn’t believe that she had done this. Some were even so bold as to blame us.
Then in November Ms. Dobson was indicted by the GRAND JURY on 2nd degree murder charges as well as 10 other counts of child abuse and endangerment.
In August 2010, Ms. Dobson's trial was held in Talbot County MD. She was found guilty of 1st degree child abuse resulting in death 2nd degree Murder and 2nd degree assault. She was sentenced to the maximum of 30 years for both the murder and child abuse charges. The judge suspended 10 on each. He is also allowing her to serve her time concurrently which is a total of 20 years.