NEW YORK (AP) — Police say a dead baby found in a teenage girl’s shopping bag at a New York City lingerie store was born alive and then asphyxiated.
Police disclosed the findings Friday. The city medical examiner’s office says an autopsy was inconclusive and more tests are needed.
Police believe 17-year-old Tiana Rodriguez gave birth to the baby at a friend’s house and that the infant was later asphyxiated.
The remains were discovered Thursday when a security guard stopped Rodriguez and her friend Francis Estevez at a Victoria’s Secret store.
Both girls were arrested on petit larceny charges. Rodriguez may face more serious charges.
It’s unclear whether either girl has a lawyer.
A woman who answered the phone at a possible home number for Rodriguez said she knew nothing about the matter. No telephone number could be found for Estevez.
The results of an autopsy could determine whether two teenage girls are hit with serious charges after one of them was found carrying a dead fetus in a bag while shopping at a Victoria’s Secret store in Manhattan.
Police were called to the store Thursday after a security guard on the lookout for shoplifters searched the 17-year-old girls, discovered a strong odor coming from one of their bags and found the fetus.
The girls were arrested on charges of petit larceny and criminal possession of stolen property, police said. The teenager thought to have given birth was hospitalized, and the other was questioned by police.
One of the girls told detectives she was carrying the remains because she had delivered a day earlier and didn’t know what to do, authorities said. It wasn’t clear whether the fetus was alive or dead when delivered, or how far along the girl was in her pregnancy.
The medical examiner’s office was performing an autopsy on the remains, and more charges could follow depending on the results.
A person who answered the phone at the home of the girl believed to have given birth had no comment. No phone number was available at the address provided by police for the second teenager.