VIRGINIA

Baby found in pond was full-term, police say

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The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office has released more information about the baby found dead in a Sterling pond Sunday.

The baby girl, who was either white or Hispanic, weighed seven pounds and was full-term. The location of her mother remains a mystery.

The baby was spotted by a passerby in the area of Awsley Court near Steed Place just before noon. The back yards of several homes border the pond, which is not far from Algonkian Elementary School.

Police say the mother likely gave a home birth. It is unclear if the baby survived the birth.

An autopsy determined the baby could have been in the pond for several days.

"I don't understand why they wouldn't have gone to the hospital or reached out to anyone for help," said Burke resident Christina Jones.

Authorities know very little about the circumstances, but are certain the baby was deliberately left behind.

"It's really sad. I'm a father of six children. It's just really tough when I see things like this," said Loudoun County Sheriff Michael Chapman.

Margie Gay lives in the house closest to the pond. She shared with police her surveillance camera footage, hoping it may help the investigation.

"It's sad that someone can get to that point where they feel like they didn't have any other choice," said Sterling resident Margie Gay.

Under Virginia's "safe haven" law, a baby up to 14 days old can be left with any hospital employee or emergency squad without risk of prosecution.

"It's very sad that this has to happen," says Abigail Levrini, a mother.

Police are reviewing neighborhood surveillance, hoping it gives them more clues.

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