A 22-year-old pregnant woman was stabbed to death in the Bronx and her baby girl surgically removed by the attacker, police said.
A local lawmaker said the woman's baby survived the attack, but has been hospitalized. The alleged attacker, who authorities said tried to claim the baby was hers, is in custody.
Police were called to the apartment in the Wakefield neighborhood of the Bronx Friday afternoon after receiving a call that an argument had turned physical. When officers arrived, they found the 22-year-old victim had been stabbed in the stomach multiple times.
The woman was taken to the hospital and was pronounced dead, authorities said. Investigators were trying to determine how far along she was in her pregnancy and what touched off the bloody confrontation.
New York City Councilman Andy King, who was briefed by investigators about the case, told The Associated Press that the victim had been strangled and then stabbed. The unborn baby was then removed from the mother.
"It appeared the fetus of the 22-year-old woman was surgically removed by the suspect who is in custody right now," King said.
A 22-year-old suspect was taken into custody at the scene, authorities said. Charges against her were pending and it was not immediately clear whether the victim and suspect knew one another. When officers arrived, King, citing police sources, said the alleged killer tried to claim that the baby girl was hers, confusing the already gruesome investigation.
"When the cops arrived, the perp claimed it was her child and that she gave birth during the struggle," King said.
The baby survived and was taken to a local hospital, according to King. He said the suspect's boyfriend was also being questioned by investigators.
"I am very disturbed," King said. "This is a horrific incident."
Witness Diana Rivera told The New York Daily News that she saw the victim being brought out of the home on a stretcher.
"She was wrapped up and there was a lot of cops around her," she said. "She was bleeding. It looked like a lot of blood."
Police have not released the identification of the victim pending family notification.