DENPASAR, Indonesia – An American woman allegedly threw her 2-month-old daughter from a moving car on the tourist island of Bali and then tried to kill herself by jumping from the vehicle, Indonesian police said Wednesday.
South Denpasar police chief Nyoman Wiarajaya told a news conference that officers haven't been able to question Nicole Stasio because she is hospitalized in a severe state of depression.
A driver and guide who were with 32-year-old Stasio told police she jumped out of the car without warning Tuesday evening at an intersection in Denpasar and they were initially unaware of what had happened to the baby.
Villagers found the infant with severe injuries about a kilometer (less than a mile) from where Stasio leapt out of the vehicle. The baby died about seven hours later at the same hospital, Bali Mandara, where Stasio is being treated.
Wiarajaya said the woman, who was born in California, traveled to Bali with her parents in July. The parents stayed in Bali for about 10 days and Stasio gave birth on the island in September after her parents had left the island.
"She refused to answer when they (the parents) asked about her baby's father," Wiarajaya said, quoting information from the driver and tour guide who accompanied the family since they arrived.
"But she gave the impression that she was unmarried and her family preferred that she give birth to a child abroad, like wanting to avoid something," he said.
The driver, Wayan Siaja, and the guide, Made Arimbawa, told police they had taken Stasio and her daughter to Bali's international airport on Tuesday evening but Stasio changed her mind about returning to the U.S. and told them to take her back to Ubud, a town popular with tourists for its traditional crafts and culture.
They said she sat silently in the car before the tragic events unfolded, according to Wiarajaya.