Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Baby Found in Uptown

From The Chicago Tribune today:

A newborn boy was reported in good condition Tuesday morning after a resident who found him abandoned outside a North Side home brought him to a nearby Chicago firehouse.

The child was left on a doorstep outside a residence in the 4600 block of North Beacon Street sometime between 2 and 2:30 a.m., authorities said.

"A gentlemen was laying in bed, heard a baby crying and after awhile went out to see what was going on and found a baby outside in a grocery bag," Chicago Fire Department spokesman Joe Roccasalva said.

The man scooped up the child and took him to the firehouse in the 1200 block of West Wilson Avenue. Paramedics checked out the baby and took him to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center.

Police had not identified the child's parents early Tuesday morning.

UPDATE: More information from the Sun-Times.

A man found a newborn boy wrapped in a plastic bag in the bushes next to the front door of his Uptown neighborhood apartment building and ran him to a nearby firehouse on the North Side early Tuesday.

About 2:45 a.m., a man found the newborn baby with his umbilical cord still attached wrapped in a plastic Jewel shopping bag in the front of his apartment building at the 4600 block of North Beacon Street, Fire Media Affairs spokesman Joe Roccasalva said.

Brandon Shephard was returning home from a date when he heard a baby crying, according to Town Hall District police Capt. William Wallace. Several windows of the large, multi-unit apartment complex were open and he thought the child was inside, so he went in but continued to hear the crying for about 20 or 30 minutes.

Shephard then walked outside and found the baby in the bushes next to the front doorway of the building, Wallace said.

"He comes back out and looks and sees the little tyke in a plastic bag," according to the captain, who said the umbilical cord was cut but not tied off.

The man ran about two blocks with the baby to a firehouse at the 1200 block of West Wilson Avenue where he banged on the door and woke the firefighters.

"Why would you do this -- what if a cat or dog had come by? It’s [the baby] defenseless. There are so many places babies can be turned in without questions asked,"the captain said.

The baby is in serious condition with hypothermia at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, according to Wallace, who said he is expected to recover. Initially, the baby was taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center in good condition, Roccasalva said.


  1. How sad. I hope that authorities can find this child an adoptive home quickly so that he doesn't languish in foster care for too long.

  2. I'm sorry the mother didn't take the baby directly to the firehouse under the "safe haven" law, but I'm so happy the baby was found quickly and brought there anyway.

    When I hear about newborns being found in the trash, it sends shivers up and down my spine. This baby's parent(s) made maybe not the best decision, but far from the worst.

  3. Wow...Brandon is a playa! Returning from a date at 2 AM on a Monday night? Nice!

    I'm just joking...I think he should be commended for his actions! I hope that somebody gives him some official thanks and praise.

  4. The person who did this should be charged with attempted murder.

  5. Our neighborhood needs a heavy dose of tolerance from everyone. But it can be a challenge when such little value is put on another person’s life. There could be lots of information we don’t know about this very young child’s mother, but the safe haven law is there for a reason. Those that choose not to follow it should and often times are held accountable when identified. I very much appreciate living around a person who takes the time to investigate why a young child is crying in the middle of the night. That is not something that everyone would take the time to do. In this case it certainly saved this young boys life.

    It is this type of event that I will try very hard to remember when I get frustrated about some of the negative things that happen in the area. Even with all of them going on there are a lot of very kind and generous people living in Uptown that value the lives of everyone and want to make the positive changes needed to improve the safety and relationships with their neighbors.

  6. "Our neighborhood needs a heavy dose of tolerance from everyone. But it can be a challenge when such little value is put on another person’s life. "

    Um, you're right. I have no tolerance for people who put babies in grocery bags and leave them to die. Call me old fashioned, but I don't think its too much to walk the two blocks to the fire department to abadon your child.