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Mississauga mother charged in murder of 3-year-old girl

The mother of a three-year-old Mississauga girl who died from brain and head injuries last year was arrested Monday and faces a second-degree murder charge.

Last September, Niyati Jha was brought to a medical clinic in the Mississauga area but soon transferred to the Hospital for Sick Children, where she was placed on life support. She died from her injuries the next day, police said.

The homicide bureau took over the investigation quickly but an arrest didn't happen immediately because, as well as the police investigation, the case involved other government bodies, said Peel Regional Police Constable George Tudos.

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"We had to wait for that to come together," he said, adding organizations involved included the Chief Coroner's office, Ontario Forensic Pathology Services, Sick Children's Hospital's Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect Unit and the Children's Aid Society.

Constable Tudos said he couldn't say how long Niyati's mother, 35-year-old Nandini Jha, had been considered a suspect.

Ms. Jha's two other children have been placed in the custody of the Children's Aid Society, Contable Tudos said. He said a seven-year-old was immediately placed into CAS custody after Niyati's death. A two-month-old baby, born after the death, has been in CAS custody since birth, he said.

Ms. Jha, who is from Mississauga, will appear at the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton on Tuesday.

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