Saturday 17 February 2018

Abandoned baby born 'earlier than thought' and died shortly after birth

Gardaí rule out foul-play in baby girl's death

The body was discovered by staff at the recycling plant. Photo: Tony Gavin
The body was discovered by staff at the recycling plant. Photo: Tony Gavin

Robin Schiller and Ken Foy

A baby girl whose remains were discovered at a recycling plant may have been born several weeks ago, it emerged last night. Investigating detectives do not suspect foul play was involved in the infant's death.

The body of the baby was discovered by a member of staff at the Greenstar recycling plant, near Fassaroe in Bray, Co Wicklow, at around 11am on Wednesday.

A post-mortem examination was carried out yesterday evening by State Pathologist Marie Cassidy and, although the outcome was "inconclusive", it is not believed foul play was involved.

It has also emerged that the baby was born a number of weeks earlier than initially suspected.

It is believed the baby's remains were damaged, but gardaí have said there is nothing to suggest deliberate injuries were caused to the infant.

"The findings of the post mortem would suggest that the baby was born some weeks earlier than initially thought. It is confirmed that the baby is female and Caucasian," a garda spokesperson said.

An incident room has been set up at Bray garda station, and investigating detectives are liaising with the Health Service Executive (HSE).

Superintendent Pat Ward has also reiterated that he is very concerned for the welfare of the baby girl's mother, as she is possibly in a distressed state and in need of medical assistance.

"I would please ask for the mum of this baby girl to seek immediate medical treatment. I am available at Bray garda station to help the mum and dad of this baby girl, and if they want to contact me or Sergeant Sorcha Fitzpatrick we will deal with any contact with us discreetly and sensitively," he said.

He also issued a further appeal to anyone, particularly family members, who may have any information. Gardaí initially believed that the recyclable refuse among which the remains were discovered originated from Co Limerick or Finglas, Co Dublin, but a wider area has not been ruled out.

Meanwhile, Cathaoirleach of Bray Town Council Brendan Thornhill said the community in Bray must come together to support the mother of the deceased infant.

"I'm very shocked, it's a very, very sad case and it's not something you hear about happening."

The incident occurred almost a year to the day since a new-born baby girl, subsequently named Maria, was discovered in a plastic bag in Rathcoole, Co Dublin.

Separately, the body of a new-born baby boy was discovered at a landfill site in Swords, Co Dublin, in 2003.

Tests showed the boy had never been fed once during his short life, and eventually died as a result of starvation after three weeks.

The infant was dumped some time earlier at Newtown Industrial Estate in Coolock and his body was transported to the landfill as workers cleared the site. No one has ever been prosecuted in relation to the horrific death.

Irish Independent

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