POLICE: Infant found in Kohl's was "full term and healthy" befor - WDRB 41 Louisville News

POLICE: Infant found in Kohl's was "full term and healthy" before death

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Louisville Metro Police say an infant was "full term and healthy" before it was found dead in a bathroom at a local department store. Louisville Metro Police say an infant was "full term and healthy" before it was found dead in a bathroom at a local department store.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville police say the baby found dead inside a Kohl's Department Store bathroom appeared to be born full-term and healthy.

Detectives know who the mother is, and say she is cooperating.

There are no charges right now because the Medical Examiner has not yet determined exactly how the child died.

But also of major concern is one question: Why did this happen?

Police say the mother gave birth to a baby girl who appeared to be full term and healthy in a Kohl's store on Thursday -- but the infant was found dead inside a restroom garbage can.

Investigators know who the mother is, and say she is cooperating. But police are still waiting for opinions from the Medical Examiner and the Commonwealth's Attorney's Office

As investigators determine what happened, others are asking why.

"I don't know what she was thinking. I'm not her. I wouldn't have wanted to be her. I just think it's a terrible loss," said Erika Janes, a nurse and child advocate at Kosair Children's Hospital.

She has seen too many cases like this one.

"It may be that they're in violent situations. They could just be alone. They may live away from any kind of support network. They're not connected to anybody," said Janes.

Janes says the Safe Infants Act passed in 2007 was designed to prevent cases like this.

It gives desperate mothers the option of essentially abandoning their newborn with authorities such as police officers firefighters or hospital workers, within 72 hours of birth. As long as there are no signs of abuse, there are no questions asked.

"They can't drop the baby at the door. You have to hand it to a person, and just leave," said Janes.

Janes says the law has been used some 30 times in six years, but she suspects it could have been used a lot more, such as a 2010 case where a child was found in dumpster.

Janes says part of the problem is the mother is often not thinking clearly within the minutes and hours after the birth.

"Your body is going through so many hormonal changes right after birth. It's incredibly difficult to make that kind of decision if you haven't thought about it within that period of time," she said.

Janes believes the 72-hour window should be extended even further, to give mothers more time to make a rational decision.

For more on the Safe Infants Act, you can follow this link. You may also call (502) 564-2136 or (800) 752-6200.

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