CHICAGO—A newborn baby boy is hospitalized in critical condition after being found atop a trash can on Chicago’s Northwest Side.
Fire Department Deputy Chief Curtis Hudson says a passer-by discovered the boy and brought the baby to a nearby fire station.
The baby was initially taken to Norwegian American Hospital. The baby’s condition was stabilized before he was transported to Lurie Children’s Hospital.
A fire department spokesman says the baby was “crying and kicking.”
Chicago police say they have not determined who left the baby on top of the garbage can.
A missing 19-year-old woman may possibly be the mother, according to the woman’s family.
Marlen Ochoa-Uriostegui was last seen after leaving a high school in Pilsen on April 23. At the time she was 9-months pregnant and was expected to give birth on May 5, reported ABC 7. Her husband and father of their 3-year-old son believes he was the last person who spoke to her on the day she disappeared.
Her family is now calling for a DNA test to identify whether Ochoa-Uriostegui is the mother of the baby.
A mother in crisis who can’t care for a newborn may anonymously surrender a baby up to 30 days old at hospitals, emergency medical care facilities, police and fire stations.
The Baby Safe Haven Law was enacted in 2001.
An estimated 674,000 children were determined to be victims of maltreatment in 2017, according to the Department of Health & Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families.
Of the victims, about 75 percent were neglected.
Nationwide, an estimated 1,720 children died from abuse and neglect, a decline from the 1,750 children who died from the same in the previous year.
Officials said there was an increase in the number of referrals to Child Protective Services for an investigation but that there was a decline in the number of maltreatment cases, a phenomenon they will be probing.
Woman Gives Birth in Secret, Baby Rescued From Trash
In South Africa earlier this year, a woman secretly gave birth at home and then dumped her newborn, inside a plastic bag, on a pile of trash that was awaiting collection.
Seconds before the garbage truck arrived, the baby boy was rescued from inside the trash bag after a scrap collector happened to hear his cries.
First responders in Durban, South Africa, posted a video of the moment that medics picked up the baby boy after unwrapping him from inside a knotted plastic bag.
The baby, weighing 4 pounds, 6 ounces and was uninjured. He was taken to a hospital in Verulam on Jan. 14, where he received treatment for an infection.
The baby’s mother was tracked down the same day, and according to the security unit that found the baby, she was charged with child abandonment and attempted murder.
According to local reports, her attorney said that she had been undergoing treatment for depression.
The newborn was found by members of a private security firm—Reaction Unit South Africa—that operates in parallel with the police. A passerby reported the cries of a baby coming from piles of trash.
“We received a call from a member of the public requesting assistance after a local scrap collector heard a baby crying in a bin packet that was tied and dumped on the side of the road,” said police spokeswoman Col. Thembeka Mbele, according to Times Live.
“Upon arrival medics found the baby in the bin packet wrapped in a denim garment. They cut the umbilical cord, which was still attached to the placenta. The child was examined and found to be free of injury.”
Epoch Times reporter Simon Veazey contributed to this report.