Carlos Mitchel was just taking out the trash on Tuesday morning in Houston when he heard a soft mewing coming from the overfilled dumpster he had just tossed his bag into. Thinking it was an animal needing rescue, the construction worker untied the plastic bag the sound was coming from and got the shock of his life.
Inside was a newborn baby boy, about seven or eight pounds, with four inches of umbilical cord still attached. The baby was purple and struggling for breath amidst food scraps and homework papers.
Mitchel, a grandfather, wrapped him up and called 911 while he and a coworker warmed the infant up in a vehicle. Emergency workers gave him oxygen when they arrived, and his color and breathing improved. He’s now in good condition at a local hospital.
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The mother has been identified as a 16-year-old high school girl that local residents said tried to hide her pregnancy. She’s being medically treated at the same hospital as her son, and the police will have to decide whether to press charges or not.
Adding insult to injury in a case like this is the fact that Texas observes a “Baby Moses” law. Parents that can’t raise their babies for whatever reason are able to hand them over to authorities in safe spots -- without fear of prosecution. Infants up to 60 days old may be left at hospitals or fire stations. Lord knows there are more than enough parents on adoption lists waiting for that call.
I wish someone had told this girl that. Heck, maybe she knew but was still scared. I can’t imagine what was running through her head. But I’m betting she didn’t believe she had any other options.
Do you think the mother should be brought up on charges?
Image via Family O'Abe/Flickr