A newborn girl, with an umbilical cord still attached that appeared to have been tied off with a shoestring, was found abandoned outside a Florida gas station early Monday morning, according to initial reports. But as the day got underway, more details to the story emerged.
Although the morning’s conditions were cold when the newspaper wrapped baby was found outside the DeBary Food Mart in Volusia County, she was taken to the hospital and, according to WKMG-TV, is in good condition.
Ralph Garlick Jr., was arrested later Monday for first falsely identifying himself and lying about the situation involving the baby.
WKMG has some of the details surrounding how the baby was found and how Garlick was involved:
Although he’s not the father, Garlick said his girlfriend is the child’s mother, adding that she gave birth early Monday at an apartment complex in Orange City, according to deputies.
Garlick said he was trying to take the baby to a safe location because his girlfriend didn’t want to keep the child, according to deputies.
Garlick later flagged down a newspaper deliveryman, who called 911 after Garlick told him that he found the baby outside the gas station.
“I just don’t understand how somebody could leave a baby in this weather,” said newspaper deliveryman Anthony Ackeridge.
The mother was found and taken to a local hospital where authorities were seeking to obtain her side of the story.
The baby, once cleared by the hospital, will be placed in the care of the state’s Department of Children and Families.
Watch WKMG-TV’s report with the initial 911 calls made about the baby:
What’s unusual about this case of reported abandonment is that under Florida’s safe haven law parents can “leave your baby, up to 7 days old, with an employee at any hospital, emergency medical services station or with a fire fighter at any fire station.”