HOUSTON — Houston police are investigating after they said an infant was found buried near a mobile home in southwest Houston Thursday morning.
Information is preliminary at this time, but Houston police said officers were called to the 3500 block of Darlinghurst at about 6:30 a.m. in reference to an infant possibly dead on the property.
When officers arrived at the location, they spoke to a 17-year-old who said she had given birth to a premature child on Monday and went to the hospital Wednesday because she was having abdominal pains.
Police said the girl was only 25 weeks pregnant at the time she gave birth.
The 17-year-old also told the hospital staff she buried the baby at her home.
Hospital staff notified the police about what happened which lead them to the 17-year-old girl's home on Darlinghurst.
At this time, it's unclear if the baby was alive or dead at the time she gave birth. That is under investigation and the cause of death of the infant will be determined by a medical examiner.
Police said the girl's family and friends were unaware she was pregnant because she was not showing.
“I really just want to make sure that everybody knows that people find themselves in all types of situations and if it’s a possibility that a child is born and the conditions and situations are not suitable to keep that child or care for that child, the Baby Moses law is still in effect," said Assistant Chief Chandra Hatcher with the Houston Police Department. "They can take that baby to a fire station or an area hospital and give that child over to someone.”
Homicide detectives are conducting an investigation.
About the 'safe haven law' or 'Baby Moses' law in Texas
From Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) —
If you have a newborn that you're unable to care for, you can bring your baby to a designated safe place with no questions asked. The Safe Haven law, also known as the Baby Moses law, gives parents who are unable to care for their child a safe and legal choice to leave their infant with an employee at a designated safe place—a hospital, fire station, free-standing emergency centers or emergency medical services (EMS) station. Then, your baby will receive medical care and be placed with an emergency provider.
Information for Parents
If you're thinking about bringing your baby to a designated Safe Haven, please read the information below:
- Your baby must be 60 days old or younger and unharmed and safe.
- You may take your baby to any hospital, fire station, or emergency medical services (EMS) station in Texas.
- You need to give your baby to an employee who works at one of these safe places and tell this person that you want to leave your baby at a Safe Haven.
- You may be asked by an employee for family or medical history to make sure that your baby receives the care they need.
- If you leave your baby at a fire or EMS station, your baby may be taken to a hospital to receive any medical attention they need. Remember, If you leave your unharmed infant at a Safe Haven, you will not be prosecuted for abandonment or neglect.