The body of a newborn was found in the brush of a vacant wooded lot in Ocean Shores Friday night by a woman walking her dog.
Investigators suspect the infant was born at a nearby motel and then abandoned in a lot in the 200 block of Fisher Avenue Northeast, said Hoquiam Chief of Police Jeff Myers. The baby’s body showed signs of trauma, but it won’t be clear exactly how or when the death happened until an autopsy is completed, he said.
Media reports about the death, which is being investigated as a homicide by Hoquiam police and the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Department, prompted citizen tips that directed detectives to a 21-year-old woman and her boyfriend, Myers said. Both are being interviewed but have not been arrested.
According to the tips, police said, the woman had been pregnant. Because of the active investigation, Myers said he couldn’t release whether or not the woman had another explanation for suddenly not having a baby.
Myers said he’s not sure what kind of charges, if any, would be recommended to a prosecutor’s office.
“A lot of this is going to hinge on pathology tests done for the autopsy,” Myers said, adding that results of those tests may not come in for a few days.
Myers said he wanted to remind the public that state law allows mothers who do not want their newborns to drop them off anonymously at open fire stations with personnel present, hospital emergency departments and federally designated rural health clinics.