One year after baby found in cooler, police still looking for information
Published 7:00 am Tuesday, January 7, 2020
By Jenna Oden
Monday marked one year since a deceased baby was found on the side of Boy Scout Road in Troup County and even at the one-year mark law enforcement has very few details about the case.
The baby, a newborn, full-term child, was found in a cooler bag on Jan. 6, 2019.
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No suspects were or have been named in the case, but recently DNA samples of the newborn female were sent to DNA Solutions, a private DNA analysis laboratory that could possibly track down the baby’s relatives.
“They will take the blood and break it down,” said TCSO Capt. Kelli Ellington with criminal investigations. “The DNA is basically broken down to where you can do familial matches to get familiar matches.”
According to Ellington, the GEDmatch is the database that holds DNA samples from companies like 23andMe or Ancestry.com.
When the newborn was found, she was found in a cooler bag with a watermelon print design on the outside with a pair of adult sweatpants and a scarf on top of the baby.
According to TCSO, after talking with several witnesses, investigators determined the cooler had been sitting in the same spot for four days.
As investigators search for the information on the child’s DNA, they are encouraging members of the public to assist them in finding the child’s mother.
Anyone with information is asked to Troup County Crime Stoppers at (706) 812-1000.
“It is completely anonymous, and we are looking for any information at all,” Sheriff James Woodruff said.
The cause of death is still undetermined.
Woodruff also added he wants to remind the community about that Safe Haven law.
The law allows a mother or father to leave their newborn at a medical facility, fire station or police station in the state with no questions asked.
“You have to physically bring in the newborn and not leave it outside,” Woodruff said. “You don’t have to answer any questions and can just come in and turn in the baby. You won’t be thrown into jail or anything like that.”
Even though the law says 30 days, Woodruff said TCSO would not refuse a child at any age.
The parent doesn’t even have to give identification, although Safe Haven facilities will collect any information provided. The nuances of the law do vary from state to state.