Police seek answers after newborn found dead in gas station bathroom

Police in Houston, Texas, are seeking a woman they believe is connected to a newborn who was found dead in a gas station restroom in April.

On April 2 at around 4:35 a.m., police and paramedics were called to the Shell gas station at 13114 South Post Oak Road when the body of a newborn was found dead in the bathroom. Recently-released surveillance video shows a Hispanic woman entering the bathroom earlier in the evening, around 10:00 p.m. She exited about 15 minutes later and drove away in a white sedan.


“No one else went inside that bathroom, and (the baby) was not there when she walked in before,” said Detective Caleb Bowling of the Houston Police Department. “It’s tragic that it’s played out the way it has.”

A customer later found the infant in the toilet and called 911. Paramedics on the scene provided medical assistance, but police later said the infant had been dead for hours.

Police say the woman is wanted for questioning. “It appears she gave birth in the restroom,” Bowling said. “We just want to talk to her. We just want to find out some more information, want to be able to put some answers to the situation.”

Every state has a safe haven law to prevent tragedies like this one. If the parents feel unable to care for their newborn, they can bring their child to an approved facility for surrender. In Texas, the law allows parents to leave their child with first responders within the first 60 days after birth at any hospital, fire station, or emergency medical services (EMS) station in the state. As long as the infant is unharmed, the parent will not be charged with neglect or abandonment.

“There are definitely other options available other than a gas station restroom, I would hope. If you’re having any sort of medical emergency, I would hope you would go to any 24/7 clinic or hospital,” Bowling said.

The cause of the child’s death is still pending verification by the medical examiner’s office.

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