Athens Review, Athens, Texas

In the News

October 30, 2012

Abandoned infant doing well

Corsicana — A newborn baby boy abandoned just before 9 p.m. Sunday evening in the 500 block of North 38th Street is fine and is now in the custody of Child Protective Services.

“He’s stable and appears he’s going to be fine,” said Corsicana Police Chief Randy Bratton. “We’re very fortunate because it got pretty cold last night. If the baby hadn’t been found quickly there’s a good chance the baby might not have made it. But the baby’s fine. CPS will take care of the baby.”

The baby was found by Mihoko and Phillip Brown on their doorstep beneath a carport, but it might have gone unnoticed if not for their cat, Stinky, which drew their attention to the door.

“They said they heard a soft sound, and the cat went to the side door and started sniffing the door. They went to investigate the cat and heard a whimper,” Bratton said. “That’s when they saw the handbag and looked inside.”

Mihoko said she thought it sounded at first like a wounded animal and she called her husband over for a listen.

“I put my ear to the door and heard something, and I barely opened the door and saw the bag,” Phillip explained. “I said ‘somebody’s left us a puppy in this bag.’ Then it started crying, and I said ‘this is a baby.’”

They brought the infant into the warmth of the house and called 9-1-1.

“You hear about this. They make movies about this kind of thing,” Phillip said. “I’m just glad we were here and we heard something.”

He said he had a better chance of winning the lottery than finding a baby on their doorstep. The Browns can’t imagine why the baby was left at their house other than they’re close to the highway and on the corner, which might have made it easier for someone to make a quick drop-off and getaway.

The baby boy, which still had his umbilical cord attached, was wrapped in towel, encased in a pillowcase, and that was inside a white plastic bag. It wasn’t possible to see the infant from looking at the bag, Phillip said.

Both police and EMS personnel responded and whisked the baby off to Navarro Regional Sunday night. Child Protective Services took custody of the baby Monday.

Police are looking for the mother, who may not have known that Texas has a Baby Moses law which gives legal immunity to a mother who leaves an infant at any hospital, fire station or police station. Police have looked for the mother in area hospitals, and they also checked with local schools to see if it was a student.

Police also searched the neighborhood and spoke to the people on the block, but no one saw the baby being dropped off or heard a car, Bratton said.

Det. Greg Cloud has been assigned to conduct the follow-up investigation. Anyone with information that may help identify the mother of the newborn is strongly encouraged to contact the Corsicana Police Department at (903) 654-4902 or Det. Cloud at (903) 654-4914.

Mihoko Brown said she couldn’t sleep last night she was so filled with anxiety over what could have happened.

“I was so glad he was crying loudly enough for us to hear it,” she said. “I was so thankful he was still alive. I can’t imagine what I would feel like if he wasn’t crying and then we found it. It was shocking enough for me. I’m just so thankful he’s alive and in good care right now.”

Stinky the cat, who attracted the Brown’s interest to the door and the baby behind it, was rescued from the Corsicana animal shelter, Phillip said.

“He’s always looking out anyway,” Brown said.

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