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Baby Left Unattended On Edgecombe Church's Steps

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EDGECOMBE COUNTY, N.C. — Authorities in Edgecombe County are investigating why a newborn was left at a church.

The baby girl was wrapped in a T-shirt and placed in a brown paper bag on the front steps of McKendree United Methodist Church, located near Tarboro. Investigators say a woman had stopped to visit her grandfather's grave Friday afternoon when she heard the baby crying.

Authorities say the baby is described as a white female weighing approximately 6 pounds and measuring 23 inches long. They believe the newborn is less than 24 hours old.

"The birth of a child was a miracle, but this was a miracle here today," said the Rev. Renee Edwards. "We pray we will be a church that will reach out to the community."

The baby was taken to Heritage Hospital and authorities said she is in good shape. The Department of Social Services has been notified.

Edgecombe County Sheriff James Knight said now that the child is safe, the focus now is finding the baby's mother. Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact the sheriff's office at (252)


or Crimestoppers at

(252) 977-1111.

All 50 states have baby abandonment or "safe haven" laws on the books. North Carolina passed the law in 2001. In North Carolina, new mothers can leave babies at medical facilities, fire stations, social services or any other responsible adult.

However, newborns cannot be left unattended. They must be given to a person. When babies are handed over, parents lose their rights.


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