Wednesday 7 December 2016

Baby Maria found in shopping bag at roadside turns one as mum urged to come forward

Published 29/04/2016 | 10:24

Baby Maria who was abandoned in Rathcoole, Co Dublin.
Baby Maria who was abandoned in Rathcoole, Co Dublin.
The infant, no more than a day and a half old when discovered, was left wrapped in a fleece blanket, inside a black bin liner and a paper carrier bag on a side road near farmland near the Dublin-Kildare border (Garda Press Office/PA Wire)

Gardai have launched a new appeal to locate the mother of an infant abandoned on the side of the road as she gets set to celebrate her first birthday next week.

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Baby Maria was just a day old when she was found wrapped in a black plastic bag on a roadside in Rathcoole in West Dublin on May 8 last year.

Sergeant Maeve O’ Sullivan, Child Protection Unit, Clondalkin and Rita Byrne, Principal Social worker, Tusla, holding a photograph of baby Maria who was found on May 8 last year
Sergeant Maeve O’ Sullivan, Child Protection Unit, Clondalkin and Rita Byrne, Principal Social worker, Tusla, holding a photograph of baby Maria who was found on May 8 last year

The baby girl was placed into the care of foster parents following her release from hospital, but Gardai have not found any leads as to the identity of Maria’s biological mother throughout the past 12 months.

A Gardai spokesperson confirmed that the investigation to find Maria’s mother is still ongoing and issued a fresh appeal for the woman to come forward.

“The investigation is still ongoing as baby Maria celebrates her first birthday in the coming weeks. Anyone with any information as to the identity of the baby’s mum should come forward. All appeals still stand,” she said.

Baby Maria was discovered last May by a motorist who had pulled into a gate on Steelestown Lane near Rathcoole, and the infant was swaddled in a fleece blanket wrapped in a bin liner inside a Marks & Spencer carrier bag.

The 6lb baby was exposed to rainfall and temperatures of 6C when she was discovered and still had her umbilical cord attached when she was taken to the Coombe Hospital in Dublin to be treated.

In a bid to locate Maria’s mum Family and Childcare agency Tulsa released a photograph of the newborn to the public last year, but Gardai confirmed they will not be releasing an updated image of the baby ahead of her milestone birthday.

Replicas of objects found with a newborn baby who had been abandoned (Garda Press Office/PA)
Replicas of objects found with a newborn baby who had been abandoned (Garda Press Office/PA)

Baby Maria is said to be thriving in the care of her foster parents.

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