An abandoned baby was found still attached to the umbilical cord along a dirt road in White Cloud, Michigan. A man walking his dog in the area came across the infant who was still alive.
As Wood TV 8 reports, the discovery happened around 10:30 am on Monday by Diamond Lake area near Marion Road, which is north of White Cloud. When Jeff Kopp took his dog, Bobby, out for a walk, they went a route they normally don’t go. Kopp says Bobby was very drawn to the direction they took, pulling on his leash as though something out of the ordinary caught his attention. The dog specifically targeted a satellite dish
“He brought me over to about here, and there’s when I saw what (looked like) a rabbit at first,” Kopp shares.
Soon it was evident something was definitely there. Kopp says, “Then it moved. That’s when I started yelling.”
Kopp had a neighbor dial 911 and hollered for his wife and daughter. The man’s daughter, Cathleen Neal, tells the news source that her father wanted them to bring a blanket because he’d just found a baby.
The most shocking part of all this is that the mother stood witnessing the rescue of her own daughter. She approached the scene and seemed curious about the commotion going on.
“When the young lady came out and asked us what was going on and I told her, she just made it seem like she didn’t know what was going on, but yet she was the one who had the baby.”
The girl is a 14-year-old who neighbors say lives close by. She’s at the same hospital where her baby’s recovering — at Gerber Hospital in Fremont. She’s in fair condition.
First responders noticed the abandoned baby had bruises and scrapes, but was otherwise in good condition, considering she was out in the elements following her birth an estimated six hours earlier.
Neal is confused by the mother’s actions. She says:
“I know she’s a young girl, but she’s not stupid, so it really makes me wonder why. It’s just really hard to believe. It’s really hard to believe that someone would do that.”
Sandra Recker, was involved in creating the Safe Delivery of Newborns Act in 2001. She says not enough teens are aware of the law that protects them for up to 72 hours if they give up their newborn to an Emergency Service Provider, such as a hospital, police station, or fire station. In Michigan, this is a “safe haven” law.
WZZM 13 adds in their coverage that according to the Michigan Department of Human Services, 11 babies were surrendered last year.
“It’s frustrating to some extent, but it really isn’t about my frustration as much as it is about the community helping young people to know and understand what options they have.”
Criminal charges haven’t been filed against the mother at this point. The Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday that they were trying to track down the baby’s father.
Child Protective Services will reportedly decide who gets custody of the infant when she’s released from the hospital.
Kopp believes God intervened when his dog wanted to go a different way on their walk… only to find an abandoned baby alongside the road.
“I feel that we were led to that place, OK, because it was out of the ordinary for me to come in this direction. I tend to think it was God led us this way, that all life is precious to Him.”
[Photo Credit: WZZM via NY Daily News]