Newborn found in car outside Grand Rapids hospital


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Police are working to find out how a newborn baby ended up in a car outside a Grand Rapids hospital on a hot June day.

The newborn was found around 9:45 a.m. Monday in the parking lot of Mercy Health Saint Mary’s Hospital. It was more than 80 degrees outside at the time. The baby, who is less than three days old, was checked out by doctors and is expected to be OK.

The man who discovered the child told police he was visiting the hospital and found the baby when he returned to his car.

The Grand Rapids Police Department is now investigating how the baby got there. Sgt. Terry Dixon called it an ‘unusual’ case.

“We’re still trying to put the pieces together here,” Dixon told reporters.

Investigators have found the baby’s mother — a 24-year-old — and said she’s in good health, but added there are inconsistencies in her story.

“Just through talking to her, there’s some things we’re trying to sort out,” Dixon said.

Investigators are looking into whether or not it was a random discovery. They’re trying to determine if the man who reported the situation to police actually knows the baby’s mother or if it’s his child.

“It’s more than possible that there’s more than meets the eye here and our detectives are searching to uncover that,” Dixon said.

GRPD said the circumstances of the situation do not meet those specified by Michigan’s Safe Delivery law — though they would not say exactly why.

Under the Safe Delivery law, a parent is allowed to legally surrender a newborn baby who is no more than 72 hours old. It can happen at hospitals, fire departments and police stations — but parents have to give their newborn to an employee who is on duty and inside a building. Parents can also call 911 to surrender their baby.

Police are still investigating, which they said could take weeks. Their findings will be turned over to the county prosecutor’s office, which will decide what, if any, charges are appropriate.

Online:

Michigan Safe Delivery law resources

Safe Delivery Hotline: 866.733.7733