COLUMBIA COUNTY, N.Y. – Following the recent news of a newborn baby that was allegedly abandoned and killed by his mother in Columbia County, officials are reminding people of Baby Safe Haven laws in New York State.
20-year-old Tara Tomlin was taken into custody on Saturday after police say she gave birth to a full-term baby inside the bathroom of the X-tra Mart gas station in Livingston where she worked.
The newborn’s body was later found in a trash bag in a dumpster behind the gas station Friday.
According to officials with the Baby Safe Haven program, this is the third babe to be abandoned in the state this month and the second of those cases to be fatal.
Under state law, anyone with a newborn up to 30 days old can give up their baby confidentially to a 911 location such as a hospital, fire department or police station.
From there, Child Protective Services take custody and puts the baby up for adoption.
A spokesperson for Baby Safe Haven says not enough people know about these options.
“People need to tell everyone they know, teens such as myself need to tell their friends, get the word out that there’s a way for newborns to be saved,” said Despina Drougas, a Baby Safe Haven spokesperson.
The coroner ruled Tomlin’s baby died of asphyxiation.
Last year, more than 100 babies were abandoned in New York.