Unwanted Baby Is NJ’s First Safe Surrender of 2018
State Police posted an unidentified infant left at a South Jersey hospital on their website, which is part of the process after a child is surrendered under New Jersey's Safe Haven program.
The girl, the first baby surrendered so far in 2018, was left at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center in Camden around noon on Dec. 3.
Under New Jersey's Safe Haven law, a child less than 30 days old that has not been abused can be given up anonymously at any police station, hospital, fire department or first aid squads that are manned 24-7, with no questions asked and no threat of criminal prosecution.
Their picture is also posted on the unidentified persons section of the State Police website.
"The reason we put those children on the website for a few months is just for due diligence in the event a baby was taken or abducted," State Police spokesman Jeff Flynn said. "The baby is entered into NCIC (National Crime Information Center) as a living person. But typically within a few days if a baby was abducted we would get a hit on that. The baby would remain on the website for a few months until he or she would become adopted."
A proposed state law, S1126, would add lessons about the Safe Haven Act to school curriculum.
In April, a 14-year-old girl was charged after leaving her baby at an abandoned home in Highland Park, after which the baby died. A dead baby was found in abandoned in Trenton and a dead baby was dumped in a suitcase along PATH tracks in Jersey City. A live baby was found in April in a duffel bag on a porch in Trenton.
Seventy newborns have been surrendered since the program became law in 2000.
The child left in Camden was described as black or Hispanic, 18.5 inches, and 5 pounds 8 ounces. The child has brown hair and brown eyes and was left in a onesie wrapped in a maternity blanket.
State Police asked anyone with information about this child to call them at 800-709-7090.