Saratoga Springs teen charged after dead baby found

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, Utah, Dec. 13, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — A Saratoga Springs 17-year-old allegedly delivered a baby on her own in the family bathtub in March, then hid the baby in a dresser after it died.

A search warrant unsealed last week in the 4th District Court of Saratoga Springs said the teen girl’s dad called police after he found the baby’s body wrapped in a shirt and robe in a closet drawer in April.

During the investigation, the teen told officers she had become pregnant after being raped at a party.

“The victim could not tell officers much information regarding the individual
who raped her, other than it was at a party near West Valley,” the search warrant said.

The victim told officers she had been a virgin prior to this incident.

She told officers she hid her pregnancy through baggy and oversized clothing, which she already wore prior to the pregnancy. During the investigation, detectives were not able to locate anyone who was aware of the teen being pregnant.

She informed detectives she had gone into labor on Easter weekend 2018. She said after the baby was born, it was under the water for several minutes, and she later found the baby to be deceased.

During the police investigation, “officers learned the victim’s stories did not add up, and she was not telling the truth,” the search warrant said. Detectives have been unable to locate who the father is or could be, the warrant said. Officials asked the teen if a family member could be the father of the baby. Detectives are testing DNA from a male relative to see if his DNA matches the baby’s.

The girl was charged with abuse or desecration of a dead body, a third-degree felony.

A judge has ordered that the girl, who has since turned 18, be placed on probation and undergo therapy.

Health officials reminded the public Thursday of Utah’s Safe Haven law.

The law allows birth parents to anonymously give up custody of a newborn at a hospital with no fear of prosecution.

“A birth parent can hand his or her baby to any hospital employee and from there the baby is taken to the Emergency Room where staff will check for any health concerns,” said a post from Intermountain Healthcare. “At that time, the Division of Child and Family Services is called and arrangements are made to place the baby for immediate adoption.”

For more about the Safe Haven law, click here.


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