CLAY COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Kentucky State Police are investigating after a dead infant was found Tuesday morning in a trash bag.
When Paul Herd got home after working a 12-hour overnight shift, he was hoping to head to bed. Instead he made a gruesome discovery.
Officials pronounced the child dead shortly after sunrise.
Police say they have been questioning everyone in the neighborhood and will cast a wider net in the hope of finding the person responsible.
Police said the baby wasn’t more than a couple of hours old.
The remains will be sent to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Frankfort for an autopsy. The cause and time of death are pending the results.
Tyler Herd, a father of two himself, said he couldn’t imagine what his father is feeling after making his discovery.
“I couldn’t sleep at night knowing, just seeing what he’s seen, over and over in your mind again,” Herd said. “No.”
“I cried,” said neighbor Sharon Wager. “I cried. There are no words to explain, there are no words for what’s happened here.”
Kentucky State Police Trooper Lloyd Cochran said police are working thoroughly.
“It’s heartbreaking,” Cochran said. “Baffles your mind thinking about who could have done this and why.”
Morgan Scaggs, the Project Director for Kentucky EMS for Children, said she couldn’t help but think how this may have been avoided with a state law. The Safe Infant Act allows anyone, for any reason, to leave a newborn baby with someone at a hospital, fire, police or EMS Station.
“There are some limited places of worship that do participate in the program and have signage that tell you that you can leave the child there,” said Scaggs. “The child does need to be left with a person, not on a doorstep.”
It is done anonymously and can be done up to 30 days after birth. The baby goes to a hospital to be checked out, then is placed in foster care.
The person who drops off the baby will be given helpful information, including advice on medical care for themselves after the birth and information on what they can do if they change their mind.
You can find out more about the Infant Safety Act here.