Human Interest

Michigan woman to stand trial after abandoning newborn in trash can

baby safe haven laws, abortions, survivors, newborn

A Detroit judge ruled on Monday that a 23-year-old woman will stand trial for child abuse and child abandonment after she allegedly put her newborn child in a trash can.

Jennifer Kayla Woodard gave birth to a baby girl in her friend Clifford Perry’s bathroom on September 13, 2020, “immediately” after arriving. According to a local news report, Perry said the baby fell into the toilet after delivery. Perry alleged that Woodard, whom authorities allege to be a drug user, intended to leave her daughter in the toilet until Perry told her to take the baby out. Woodard then proceeded to put the baby in a trash can.

“She walked out of the bathroom and put the baby in the trash,” said Perry. “I asked if she would come [to the hospital with him], and she said no.”

Perry said he then wrapped the newborn in a towel and brought her to a local hospital, where, according to another report, he gave the baby to a stranger, claiming he needed to go park his car. The stranger handed the baby over to medical staff and Perry failed to return. Reportedly, Perry had gone home in hopes of convincing Woodard to go to the hospital with him. However, when he returned home, Woodard was gone.

The newborn baby girl was said to be “cold to the touch” when medical staff received her, due to significant blood loss because her umbilical cord was not clamped at birth. After a blood transfusion, her condition stabilized and she is now in the care of the state. Further information on the child’s condition or living situation is not known at this time.


Jennifer Kayla Woodward faces charges of child abandonment and second-degree child abuse. Wayne County Sheriff’s Department.

News reports state that Woodard originally faced a charge of assault with intent to murder, in addition to the child abandonment and child abuse charges. On Monday, the Detroit judge threw out the assault with intent to murder charge stating that “if [the baby] had died, that would be different.”

READ: After abortion pill fails, mother receives second chance to choose life

Heather Burner of the National Safe Haven Alliance bemoaned the unnecessary situation, saying, “If this mom had heard of us or had heard of Safe Haven and called our hotline, we have a crisis support team that does the research for her and we would find the resources as far as pregnancy centers, OB care, any type of services that she was needing.”

Safe Haven Laws exist in all 50 states, allowing parents to leave their children at designated safe locations under certain conditions without fear of criminal prosecution. Sadly, Live Action News has recently covered multiple cases in which Safe Haven Laws were not taken advantage of in Illinois, California, and Wisconsin. While the Illinois baby survived, tragically the California and Wisconsin babies did not.

Virtually everyone understands the senselessness and horror of willfully killing a child. Unfortunately, this is not the case when the child is still in the womb and therefore vulnerable to abortion. The child’s location at the time of her killing is the only thing that differentiates a criminal conviction in one case from a woman’s lawful exercise of her “right to choose” in the other.

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