Baby found in Schaumburg church parking lot

October 24, 2011 2:17:20 PM PDT
Police in northwest suburban Schaumburg are searching for the person who abandoned a newborn baby at a church, leaving her in a shopping bag on a parked car.

A church member saw the shopping bag on his car and brought it inside, thinking it had been misplaced. Seeing only a teddy bear, he set it on a folding table in the foyer of Gospel Presbyterian Church at 210 South Plum Grove Road Sunday afternoon.

After about 30 minutes, church elder Bob Song said someone heard faint baby noises from inside.

"We found a reddish color bath towel totally wrapped around the baby," said Song. "So I unwrapped the baby towel and it was a very healthy-looking baby."

Song immediately called authorities. The state's Safe Haven law allows for parents to abandon their children at hospitals, police stations, fire stations or emergency medical facilities without prosecution. Churches are not included on that list.

"People expect the church is a safe haven," said Pastor Don Shin. "Church people, they willingly help the needy. That's why they put the baby here. Maybe they cannot take care of the baby."

Police say the 7-pound Asian girl still had an umbilical cord and appears to be healthy. Officials are now looking for her mother.

"First and foremost we want to make sure that she's healthy, both physically and mentally," said Schaumburg Police Sgt. John Nebl. "We also want to make sure that she was not coerced or forced to abandon the baby. So we definitely want to speak to mom."

Anyone who might have information about the child or the mother's whereabouts is asked to call the Schaumburg Police Department at (847) 882-3534.

Authorities say the child remains at a local hospital. Once she is medically cleared, DCFS will take custody of the baby. Church officials say there are some members interested in adopting the baby.

"I just hope she will be in good hands with loving parents hopefully soon," Bob Song said.


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