Baby found in storage shed; allegedly abandoned by 16-year-old mother

Posted: Updated:
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

MESA, Ariz. -- Authorities said a teenage girl could be facing criminal charges after allegedly giving birth and then leaving the newborn in a storage shed outside an east Mesa home.

Maricopa County sheriff's officials said the baby girl was taken to a hospital with head injuries.

Deputies were called to the home around 3:15 p.m. Sunday when the 16-year-old girl reported giving birth. Upon arrival, deputies found the teenager bleeding extensively. She was taken to the hospital.

Family members told police that they found the placenta but couldn't locate the child.

"Deputies stayed on scene and were very vigilant looking around the property and approximately 30 minutes later, they found the baby in the back shed area," said Joaquin Enriquez of MCSO.

Deputies found the infant awake and alert, but said she did suffer a possible skull fracture.

Authorities said the unidentified mother could have dropped the infant off at a nearby hospital or fire station under Arizona "Safe Haven" law.

The 2001 law allows anyone to anonymously drop off unharmed infants within 72 hours of their birth.

The teenage mother is under observation at the hospital. She has not been arrested, but detectives are treating this as a potential criminal investigation.

Child Protective Services has been contacted and is working with deputies to determine exactly what happened.