A sad and disturbing case of infanticide has cropped up in North Carolina. There, police found the body of a 8.5-pound newborn baby wrapped in a bag and buried in a teenage girl’s yard.
As the Associated Press reports:
Sheriff Jerry Jones said deputies responding to a tip went to a home near the town of Louisburg on Sunday evening and asked to speak to a teenage girl they believed to be the mother. Jones said they left when told the girl was not home.
The sheriff said the girl’s father later called the deputies and asked them to return. When they did, they were directed to a shallow grave where the 8 1/2-pound baby girl was found in a bag.
Jones said the state medical examiner’s office determined the baby had been born healthy. It was not clear how or when she died.
Jones said the teenage girl is hospitalized, and no charges have been filed pending further investigation.
A person who had heard “third-hand” about the baby’s birth alerted Louisburg police about 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jones said. The person told police he had heard that an acquaintance had received a text message about a concealed birth, according to Jones.
“He said, ‘If I don’t tell somebody, I can’t live with myself,’” Jones said.
The police contacted sheriff’s deputies, who followed the tip to a home in a subdivision, where they’d been told they might find a teenager who had given birth recently.
Deputies didn’t find the 16-year-old girl, and her father told them it seemed to be a “sick prank,” Jones said. The deputies left the house and asked a series of other people about the case over the next several hours.
At 10 p.m., the teen’s father called deputies.
“He said he put a lot of thought into what we said and he had found what we were looking for,” Jones said Monday evening.
The man had found one of his yard tools and a freshly tilled patch in the yard beside his house, Jones said. When deputies uncovered the spot, they found an 8.5-pound infant girl in a bag, Jones said.
Deputies sent the body to the state medical examiner’s office, which reported Monday that it showed no signs of trauma and had apparently been born healthy on Sunday, Jones said.
“It’s looking more and more that it was a live birth,” he said. “We were hoping that that wasn’t the case.”