Local News

Mother Turns Over Baby Under 'Safe Surrender' Law

Posted May 12, 2005 9:35 a.m. EDT

— A mother turned over a baby girl to Hope Mills firefighters Thursday.

Under North Carolina's

Safe Surrender law

, which was adopted to protect children, mothers can surrender a child at designated facilities without fear of prosecution.

Authorities believe the child is about one day old and said she appears to be in healthy condition.

Firefighters said the mother was crying and described her as very remorseful.

"She was upset," said Lt. Robert Rhode. "I don't think it was an easy thing for her to do, but I think it was the right thing, possibly."

Rhodes said she told them that she could not handle taking care of the child.

Authorities have decided to name the baby Hope.

Under the Safe Surrender law, which took effect in 2001, the child must be unharmed and under seven days old. Local agencies say six newborns have been surrendered safely under the law so far in 2005.