New York

Dead Newborn Found in Trash at NYC Playground Was in Advanced Stage of Decomposition: Sources

What to Know

  • A baby boy found dead in a playground trash can in Queens Saturday was in an advanced state of decomposition, authorities now say
  • The grisly discovery was made by passersby at the Dutch Kills playground; emergency responders found the umbilical cord still attached
  • A medical examiner will determine how the boy died as police continue their investigation into who left him there

The newborn boy discovered in a trash can at a Queens playground over the weekend was in an advanced stage of decomposition, and likely had been in the trash can for days, sources say. 

The baby was found Saturday morning in the trash at Dutch Kills Playground, near Public School 112 in Astoria. Law enforcement sources say when emergency responders untied the plastic bag Saturday, the umbilical cord was still attached.

The newborn had no signs of trauma. 

Devon Davis says he was walking at the playground around 10:30 a.m. Saturday when he noticed a strong smell.  

"I thought it was just like garbage or animals being run over," Davis said.

That's when he says one of his friends called him over to a trash can in shock. 

"When she called me over, she told me there was a baby in a trash can, like wrapped in a bag," Davis said. "I didn't know if he was dead or alive."

After discovering the baby, Davis called 911 and lead paramedics to the baby, who was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Signs have since been posted on the playground, offering a $2,500 reward for information. People have also been leaving flowers near the trash can. 

"That's traumatizing, that would freak me out," said parent Jasmine Bracy as she brought her child to the playground Monday. "I wouldn't be able to recover from something like that." 

"No matter the situation, there's so many things you could do other than put it in the garbage can." 

In the tri-state area, the Safe Haven Law allows parents to abandon a baby up to 30 days of age at a hospital without fear of prosecution. 

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