A 2-month-old baby boy was found dead in his cot by his mother who went to check on the infant who had earlier been put down for a sleep.
The newborn died at his Manurewa home yesterday. Police said the parents were devastated. The death was not thought to be suspicious, but police said last night they would be investigating the care of the baby and those responsible for him.
"The death will be investigated for the purpose of scrutinising the care the baby has received in order to clarify whether there are any issues that should necessitate the police taking further action," said Detective Inspector Jim Gallagher.
The baby's body was taken from the house last night. About 20 people stood together and prayed before the hearse pulled away.
A woman who identified herself as a cousin of the baby's mother said she did not know how he died. The baby and his mother were from a good family and they were all very upset.
Mr Gallagher said the Fire Service was asked to help with "a range of aspects" relating to the environment the baby was in. "One of the things the Fire Service was asked to assist the police in was determining temperatures within the house."
Mr Gallagher was reluctant to speculate on how and why the baby died. He confirmed the 2-month-old was sleeping in a cot, which was his usual sleeping arrangement. "The loss of a 2-month-old child, I would imagine, is a tragic loss for them."
A Counties Manukau police spokesman told the Herald that there were no obvious signs the baby had been mistreated or the death was suspicious.
Additional reporting: Moana Tapaleao