It wasn't a picture-perfect birth scenario by any means, but the Santa Cruz County Jailhouse lobby served quite well as the delivery room for one little girl who was born there this past weekend. In fact, she was fortunate that's where her mom happened to be when she unexpectedly went into labor.
The birth story began Sunday afternoon when a 29-year-old woman, who isn't being identified, was arrested on suspicion of public drunkenness. According to the Santa Cruz Sentinel the jail initially refused to book her because she was both drunk and pregnant, and she was taken to a hospital for evaluation.
Everything must have checked out alright because later that night she was taken back to the jail for the evening and booked. The next morning, after employees determined she was sober, they were escorting her out to a car in which her brother was waiting ... but they didn't make it out of the building.
Instead, the woman, who had previously showed no signs of labor, suddenly went into it. Jail employees jumped into action and helped deliver her baby girl, who was thought to be two or three months premature. When the baby stopped breathing, workers resuscitated her before paramedics arrived.
Sgt. Steve Carney said, "They (the staff members) probably saved this little baby's life. What if she (the mother) had walked away?"
What if she had? She could have gone into labor in the car, with no help around, or after her brother dropped her off and she was alone. There are so many frightening scenarios that could have happened as well as perhaps the most frightening one in which no one may have been alerted that this woman is a potential threat to her child -- as I would say anyone who gets drunk enough to be jailed while pregnant is.
Hopefully now by nature of this unique birth she and her baby will at least be on the radar of professionals who can intervene and offer help to both of them as necessary. Hopefully they can help ensure this baby's future is much brighter than circumstances under which she came into the world.
What's the strangest place you've heard of someone delivering a baby?
Image via DieselDemon/Flickr