Newborn Found In Shoe Box

FRANKLIN, Ky. (AP) - A newborn was recovering at a hospital Tuesday, a day after being found in a shoe box outside a duplex in south-central Kentucky.

The baby, full term and weighing more than five pounds, was discovered by two small children late Monday morning, said Capt. Mike Rigg of the Simpson County sheriff's department, which got the call about the baby at 11:36 a.m. CST.

The child was wrapped in a blanket and a plastic shopping bag, and placed inside a shoe box, Rigg said. He said the children who found the baby live next door to the vacant duplex where the boy was found.

The National Weather Service reported the temperature as 43 degrees at 11 a.m. Monday in Bowling Green, about 25 miles north of Franklin.

Doris Thomas, spokeswoman for The Medical Center in Bowling Green, said the baby was in good condition Tuesday.

Rigg said the baby's umbilical cord had been cut, but not sealed, and his internal temperature was around 85 degrees when he was taken to The Medical Center in Franklin on Monday.

When his temperature got into the 90s he was transferred to Bowling Green, Rigg said. He said the boy was expected to be released from the hospital in a day or two and would initially be a ward of the state.

Rigg said there were "no indicators in the box at all" about where the child came from. His department is investigating to try to find the mother.

Kentucky law provides a way for parents to abandon a newborn in a number of safe places - but not a vacant residence - without fear of prosecution.

Under Kentucky's Safe Infants Act, parents or someone acting on their behalf, may leave babies younger than 3 days old at a safe place, such as a hospital, police station, fire station or emergency medical service provider. Under the law, a parent will not be prosecuted for leaving a baby less than 72 hours old or if the infant is taken to a safe place and has not been physically abused or neglected.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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