What's next for 'Baby Mia?'

March 19, 2009 3:47:36 AM PDT
We have latest developments surrounding a newborn baby girl, found abandoned in a dryer on Tuesday. The focus is now on the baby, who's being called "Mia", and what happens to her. [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

She's being called a miracle baby and for the first time, we're seeing her little face. Authorities released a photo Wednesday in hopes that someone will know where she came from.

"If you recognize this child, if she resembles someone you know, if she resembles someone's other children, we want you to let us know," said Gwen Carter with CPS.

The little girl named by hospital workers 'Mia' was found Tuesday in an old clothes dryer near a dumpster at a southwest Houston apartment complex. The neighbor who found her happened to be throwing out some clothes when he heard her cries.

The infant girl was wrapped in a towel, placed in a garbage bag, umbilical cord still attached. Her mother was nowhere to be found.

"We just want to remind people that anything can happen," said Carter. "Anything could have happened to this baby."

On Wednesday, a judge granted emergency custody of the child to CPS. Two ad litems who will represent the child in court were also assigned to the case. They are pushing for an expedited hearing process given the potential danger this child was in.

"The child was abandoned next to a dumpster next to an abandoned dryer," said ad litem Gary Pollard. "Under the wrong circumstances, could have been picked up by refuse people and taken to a dump and that would have been the end."

For now, the baby remains at Texas Children's Hospital and is in good condition. Once she's released, she'll enter a foster home. Tomorrow, a hearing will be held that could clear the way for the child to be adopted.

"The child will be placed, hopefully with the people who are planning on adopting immediately and after trial, they will be given the opportunity to adopt," said ad litem Elizabeth Wyburn. "But hopefully, we'll be able to place immediately so with those people so the baby will be able to begin bonding with those people.

The first choice is for the child to go with relatives. So far, no relatives have come forward.

It's too early to tell at this point if the mother will face charges. Texas was the first state to enact a safe haven law. It's known as the "Baby Moses" law. It allows parents to leave their infant up to 60 days old at a hospital, licensed child placement agency or emergency medical service provider without fear of prosecution.

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