UPDATED: Mother identified; investigation is ongoing
UPDATE: Police located the mother of the deceased infant, now identified as a girl. APD says the mother called for medical assistance, and its investigation is ongoing. No arrests have been made or charges filed.
EAGLE RIVER – The Anchorage Police Department is investigating the death of a newborn baby found in a park.
Officers say a person walking their dog through Turner Park in Eagle River found the baby’s body around 9:30 Tuesday morning.
Investigators said the baby was maybe 12 hours old.
Sgt. Cindi Stanton with the Crimes Against Children Unit said something like this hasn’t happened in our community in about 20 years.
She said that’s likely because Alaska has a Safe Surrender Law that allows parents to drop off infants up to 21 days old at fire or police stations or hospitals.
“You’re saying, I can’t take care of this child. it’s way better than abandoning a child in a home, in a park or even getting to the point where you abuse a child. There’s a lot of options,” said Sgt. Stanton.
Investigators are trying to find the mother and said she may have physical injuries from giving birth or psychological issues if she left her baby in a park.
An autopsy by the Medical Examiner’s Office will determine the baby’s cause of death or if it might have been stillborn.