Policeman Finds 5-Month-Old Baby Abandoned in Remote Mountains

State   |   Dave Andrusko   |   Jul 12, 2018   |   5:03PM   |   Helena, MT

John Sexton put it perfectly this week. In addition to the spectacular rescue of 12 teenage soccer players and their coach from a cave in Thailand, “There was another amazing rescue this week.”

Here is the lead from CNN’s story:

A sheriff’s deputy who found a baby partially buried but alive in the mountains of Montana over the weekend says he lost his composure when he found the infant — and had just been on the verge of giving up hope the boy could be rescued.

Ross Jessop, a Missoula County sheriff’s deputy, was scouring a wooded area in the western part of the state for the 5-month-old boy with other officers early Sunday, after a man told deputies the baby might be buried there.

It was believed the baby, found buried under a pile of sticks in a wet and soiled onesie, had been in the remote area for at least nine hours in 46 degree temperatures.

What triggered the hunt which brought together members of Missoula County Search and Rescue, the United States Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Montana Highway Patrol, and Missoula County deputies? According to the sheriff’s office statement the child had been in the care of a man later identified as Francis Carlton Crowley on Saturday.

“He was seen acting strangely near a small resort area known as Lolo Hot Springs,” Sexton wrote. “Police were called around 8 pm but when they arrived Crowley was gone. Meanwhile, the responding deputies learned that Crowley had been watching an infant and the infant was now missing.”

CNN reported that Crowley left the area before deputies arrived. According to the statement, “they learned that the baby who was supposed to be with him hadn’t been seen for hours.”

Crowley returned to the hot springs and was apprehended by police, the statement said. As deputies tried to question him, Crowley appeared to be under the influence of drugs and was not making sense to officers, it said.

Crowley made statements to officers saying the baby was possibly buried in the mountains, authorities said.

That’s about as vague as you can get. So why the all-out search? “Because it was believed a life was at stake.”

However by around 2am Sunday, after six long hours, the search party had all but given up hope. “All night long, I was preparing myself mentally to find a dead baby. … I was angry, kind of, at the time,” Jessop told HLN’s Mike Galanos on Tuesday afternoon. “I was losing my faith … that the baby was even alive.”

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Then, providentially—on a “whim”—Jessop and another officer walked uphill from where they had last seen some debris.

“When they were about to crest the hill, they paused to tell other officers by radio where they were,” CNN reported.”’And during the break in communications, we both heard the small whimpering of a child,’” Jessop recalled.

“I was so overcome with emotion that my cop instincts and my cop training … went away,” Jessop said. “I just wrapped that baby up just like a father would any child in need.”

“I have three kids myself, and I think without a question that hearing that little baby the other night brought to me more joy than even my own children coming into this world,” he said.

The child has minor scrapes and bruises, but is in good condition, according to CNN affiliate KPAX. The baby was placed in the custody of the Montana Child and Family Services Division.

Jessop, at a news conference Tuesday afternoon, said when he picked up the child the baby had a sparkle in his eye. The deputy gave him a few kisses. The child was too fatigued to cry, the deputy said. The baby was cold and seemed distressed so officers draped a coat around him.

“He settled in pretty good. He was coughing a little bit, he actually coughed up a few sticks out of his mouth,” Jessop said.

LifeNews.com Note: Dave Andrusko is the editor of National Right to Life News and an author and editor of several books on abortion topics. This post originally appeared in at National Right to Life News Today —- an online column on pro-life issues.