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Child Abandonment

April 20, 2006 | Michelle Keller, Times Staff Writer
A baby boy was found dead Wednesday morning on the steps of an Inglewood church, police said. A priest at St. John Chrysostom Catholic Church, in the 500 block of East Florence Avenue, was preparing to open the rectory doors at 6 a.m. when he found the baby, said Lt. Mike McBride of the Inglewood Police Department. The infant was 2 to 3 months old and wearing a white, long-sleeved shirt and diapers.
January 31, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
A Brazilian hospital released a 2-month-old girl to child protection authorities, two days after she was found in a plastic bag floating on a board in southeastern Brazil's Pampulha Lake. Scores of Brazilians had mobbed Odilon Behrens Municipal Hospital in Belo Horizonte hoping to adopt or at least catch a glimpse of the child, who had not been named. Police charged the mother, 27-year-old Simone Cassiano da Silva, with attempted homicide. She denied setting the girl adrift.
January 4, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A father and stepmother allegedly left their two boys alone and celebrated New Year's Eve in Las Vegas, authorities said. San Ramon Police Sgt. Eric Webb said officers checked on the 5- and 9-year-old brothers Saturday night after their grandmother said she suspected they were by themselves. The boys were unharmed. Police have not released the parents' names because no arrests have been made, but have confirmed they are conducting a criminal investigation.
December 2, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A woman was arrested on suspicion of child endangerment after police found a dead newborn baby wrapped in plastic bags inside a trash bin at her apartment complex, authorities said Thursday. Hilda J. Figueroa, 29, of Redwood City was being held at the San Mateo County Jail, according to Redwood City police. Police said they went to San Mateo General Hospital early Wednesday after Figueroa told doctors there that she had had a miscarriage.
October 29, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A judge set bail at $200,000 Thursday for a Stockton woman charged with murder for allegedly dumping her newborn son in a trash can. Rozenara Chap, 19, has been held in the San Joaquin County Jail since she turned herself in to authorities earlier this month, a week after a resident found the dead baby. Deputy Dist. Atty. Janet Smith protested the bail amount, saying: "If she gets out, she's not coming back." But the judge said Chap was not a threat to society and had strong family ties.
October 19, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The mother of a dead baby found in a trash bin was being held in San Joaquin County jail, charged with homicide, Stockton police said. Rozenara Chap, 19, turned herself in on Sunday, authorities said Police Department spokesman Pete Smith. She remained in jail Tuesday. A neighbor found the newborn in a plastic bag last week. Authorities said the baby had been born alive.
October 19, 2005 | Richard Fausset, Times Staff Writer
If Dennis Zine had his way, the trash bin near USC where the body of an abandoned infant was discovered last week would have been plastered with a big, bright sticker explaining where to safely drop off an unwanted newborn. Zine, a Los Angeles city councilman, sponsored a September 2004 motion calling for such stickers on all dumpsters in the city. But the sanitation bureau pointed out how difficult and expensive that would be, given the 150,000 trash bins in the city of Los Angeles.
October 16, 2005 | Rebecca Trounson and Hector Becerra, Times Staff Writers
The case of Holly Ashcraft, the USC student charged with murder last week after the body of her newborn was discovered in a trash bin, has triggered new debate over the effectiveness of laws designed to protect unwanted infants. California's law, which allows mothers to give up unwanted children without fear of prosecution, went into effect in January 2001. In the nearly five years since then, 98 babies have been safely relinquished.
October 15, 2005 | Richard Winton, Hector Becerra and Rebecca Trounson, Times Staff Writers
A 21-year-old USC student charged with her baby's abandonment and death this week also was investigated last year after she arrived at a hospital in downtown Los Angeles appearing to have just given birth but without a baby, according to law enforcement sources close to the case. In that April 2004 investigation, Holly Ashcraft eventually told authorities that the child had been stillborn and that she had disposed of its body on her own, the sources said.
October 13, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Police arrested a 21-year-old USC student Wednesday on suspicion of murder after connecting her to the death of a newborn boy whose body was found next to a trash bin behind a popular student bar, authorities said. Holly Ashcraft was ordered held on $1-million bail after she was taken into custody at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. She reportedly had been suspended from USC because of academic problems, LAPD Capt. Anita Ortega said.
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