Police Search For Answers In Newborn's Death - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/30/08

Police Search For Answers In Newborn's Death

On Wednesday, a Lubbock teen told emergency room staff she delivered a still-born baby and left it in her back yard.  Now, police await autopsy results to determine if that story is true. "Everything that the woman has told us does seem to be consistent," Lubbock Police Captain Greg Stevens said.

The staff at Covenant Medical Center immediately alerted police, after they heard the teen's story. Authorities rushed to her home near 20th and Avenue L. There, they found a newborn baby boy who was dead.

Police released the scene around 6 p.m. Wednesday after a thorough search outside and inside the home.  Police say they cannot tell us where they found the baby, due to the ongoing investigation.  We can tell you that, as of Wednesday night, no criminal charges had been filed.

Investigators tell NewsChannel 11 they need autopsy results to determine their next step. "All indications are that this baby does appear to be a newborn baby, born just a number of hours ago," Captain Stevens said. 

The 18-year-old mother says she delivered the child stillborn. Investigators say she went to the emergency room at Covenant Medical Center for treatment, and told workers she'd left the baby boy in the back yard.

"I was inside watching TV, and I heard EMS coming," neighbor Maria Hinojosa said.  Hinojosa went outside to find emergency crews swarming the neighborhood.  "The only thing I heard is they found a baby dead, and that's it," Hinojosa said. 

"We took her to the emergency room around two," Gina Rodriguez said.  Rodriguez says she lives with the 18-year-old, and tells NewsChannel 11 she didn't know her roommate was pregnant.  "She said her stomach was hurting; she said she hadn't had her period in a long time, like she started and was bleeding a lot, and she felt like fainting.  So, we took her to the emergency room," Rodriguez said. 

Lubbock Police say the child appeared to be full-term. They did not comment any further on the baby's condition at the time of the discovery. An autopsy is scheduled to determine if the child was still-born.  "That's what we're trying to answer; that's what the lady did give to us. Again, we've found no inconsistencies in what she's told us so far," Captain Stevens said. 

Police say the 18-year-old does have another child who is around three years old, and that other children live in the home. Child Protective Services is also investigating.  Wednesday night we did not know if they removed the children, or let them stay with family members at the home.

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