STERLING, Va. (WUSA9)
- The body of a newborn found in the pond was a few days old, The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office said in a press conference on Monday.
An autopsy by the Office of the Medical Examiner determined that the baby girl was either White or Hispanic and appeared to be full term. She weighed 7 pounds and 20 ounces, and had no food in her stomach, officials said.
Deputies said it is still unclear if the baby was alive at birth or a stillborn. The baby appeared to have been in the pond for a short period of time.
Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman says deputies first got the call on Sunday at around 11:42 a.m. when someone was taking a walk and saw the newborn baby girl floating in the pond along the shoreline.
Investigators are still searching for the mother who dumped her baby there.
"It's awful. Someone wouldn't want that baby," said Rita Chambers.
It's the last thing Chambers and her neighbors would expect in this quiet upscale neighborhood off Steed Place near Algonkian Parkway.
"It's mostly adults with families and fishing poles," said Sheriff Mike Chapman. "Apparently she is a full term, newborn baby and it's a very sad situation."
Loudoun County Sheriff says investigators are working with school resource officers and child protective services to identify anyone who may have been expecting a child and too afraid to go to the hospital.
"I'm a father of 6 and anytime something happens to young children or anyone, it has a major impact," said Sheriff Chapman.
The baby has been taken to the medical examiner's office where they'll determine the girl's race.
The Sheriff says the baby's body was recently dumped in the pond and he's concerned the mother may need medical attention.
They don't know if the baby was a still born or alive at birth.
Mothers who are in this type of desperation are protected by Virginia's safe haven law.
A mother can drop off a baby up to 14 days old at any hospital or fire department. In DC, a mother can drop off a baby who's up to 7 days old. In Maryland, a baby can be up to 10 days old.
If you have any information about the identity of the mother or saw suspicious activity near Awsley Court call Detective S. Petrakos at 703-777-0475.