MARION COUNTY, FL (WESH/CNN) - Some travelers on Interstate 75 got the surprise of their lives when they found a baby abandoned in a bathroom at a rest stop.
Investigators are searching for the child’s mother. They believe the woman gave birth at the rest stop, then left her baby behind.
But officials say that within an hour of the birth, the baby was recovered. Shortly after the mother left, a couple from out of town stopped and called 911 after spotting the newborn on the floor.
“It could have been horrible,” said Lt. Todd Spicher of the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. “It was cold, It was damp. It’s on a cement floor. There’s no telling how long he could have made it. Thank God for those folks.”
Cindy Turner, a Marion County intervention specialist, was asked to rush to the hospital after the baby arrived there, to take initial custody.
“It’s really heartbreaking,” Turner said. “Not being able to have children myself, and there are so many people that do want children. There are so many other options.”
Among those options is the Safe Haven Law. No questions will be asked if someone chooses to leave their baby, up to seven days old, with a professional at a hospital, emergency medical services station or fire station.
“We don’t have to ask anything,” Spicher said. “We’ll take that baby and we’ll make sure it’s properly taken care of.”
Thankfully, the baby boy found at the rest stop will be OK.
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