Shock as newborn baby girl is found dead in boot of car
A COMMUNITY is in shock after the body of a newborn baby girl was found in the boot of a car.
Police have just released details of the incident in which the infant was discovered in the vehicle off the Upper Newtownards Road in Belfast.
It is believed a young woman from the area gave birth to the child, but it died at the scene.
Sources said it happened close to the woman's home in the Thornhill neighbourhood, opposite Stormont.
She was taken to the nearby Ulster Hospital in Dundonald for treatment.
Police yesterday confirmed an infant had been found in the boot of the vehicle and said they were "investigating the circumstances surrounding the sudden death of a newborn baby girl in east Belfast".
A spokesman said inquiries were ongoing with the family of the baby.
It's still not clear how the child died, but a post-mortem examination has been carried out and the results are being assessed.
According to police a "follow-up" operation also involved a forensic examination of the scene.
Police later removed a vehicle from the area.
Many people living and working on the busy Upper Newtownards Road were unaware yesterday of Tuesday's tragedy that had occurred only a short distance from their doors.
One shocked shopkeeper described the news as an "absolute tragedy".
A visibly emotional resident said she had heard about the "horrible" death in the neighbourhood but did not wish to talk about it any further.
UUP councillor Jim Rodgers said his thoughts and sympathies were with the entire family at what he described as "this very difficult time".
The representative for the Victoria area in the east of the city described the death of the baby as a "genuine tragedy".
"This is a terrible thing to have happened and it is a real shock to all of those within the community," he said.
"I would send my thoughts and prayers to this young woman and the rest of her family.
"I would also ask that their privacy is respected at this very difficult time."
Alliance East Belfast MP Naomi Long said she had been upset to hear of the death of the newborn.
"There are some tragic circumstances surrounding the discovery of this baby," she said. "I am deeply saddened by this baby's death."
"I would ask if anyone has any information that may assist the police in their investigations to come forward."