In a heart-wrenching incident, a North Carolina father has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder and intentional child abuse after allegedly shaking his 3-week-old son to death. The tragic incident unfolded at the WakeMed Health and Hospitals campus in Raleigh, North Carolina, leaving a grieving mother and family in its wake.
Noah Benjamin Bliss, a 22-year-old resident of Angier, is currently in custody, facing these grave charges. Court records obtained by PEOPLE magazine provide insight into this distressing case, which occurred on October 6.
Little information is available regarding the specific events leading to the newborn’s tragic death, but the arrest warrant states that Bliss “unlawfully, willfully, and feloniously did of malice aforethought kill and murder G.B,” referring to his son, Gunner Bliss.
The mother, Savannah Bliss, shared her heartbreak with local outlet WRAL, expressing her desire for justice for her son. The Bliss family had been through a difficult period as their twins, Gunner and Madelyn, were born prematurely at 34 weeks on September 15. The babies required neonatal care at the hospital, where this tragic incident occurred.
On the fateful day of October 6, while Savannah visited Madelyn in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Noah was entrusted with caring for Gunner and their 1-year-old child in a room at WakeMed’s Heart Center Inn on the hospital’s top floor. During this time, Gunner suffered a brain bleed and swelling due to head trauma, according to hospital staff. While there were no external injuries or broken bones, the child had been deprived of oxygen as a result of the head trauma.
Savannah recounted that nurses informed her that the injuries Gunner sustained indicated that he had been shaken by his own father. This revelation is particularly heartbreaking for a mother who had entrusted her husband with their child’s care.
Tragically, Gunner Bliss was taken off life support on Monday, leaving Savannah and her family devastated. She remembered her son as a sweet boy with beautiful blue eyes, stating, “He was the best baby, and for him to be taken so soon is so wrong.”
Noah Bliss is currently being held without bond and is scheduled to appear in court in November. Attempts to reach his public defender for comment have been unsuccessful.
Child abuse is a grave issue that demands immediate attention. If you suspect child abuse, it is essential to report it. You can contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453. This hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages, and all calls are toll-free and confidential.
This tragic incident serves as a reminder of the importance of safeguarding the welfare of children and addressing child abuse in our communities. The Bliss family’s ordeal highlights the need for vigilance and support for vulnerable children to prevent such heartrending incidents from occurring in the future.