A Brooklyn, N.Y., 27-year-old woman on crack handed her newborn baby to a stranger on Thursday while the umbilical chord was still wrapped around the infant and attached with a shoestring, reports WABC News.
The Mother, whom police have now identified as Shoshanna Muhammad, had been walking the streets in a daze with the infant in her arms, along with an opened package of diapers and a baby bottle. Strangers tried to approach the woman who appeared to be in distress, but she warded off any assistance. She finally stumbled on to a random apartment building and approached Lydia Romero (pictured), a resident there and total stranger. The Mom placed the child, diapers, and bottle on a step in the hallway.
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Muhammad uttered to Romero, “You can have it.” She then told the stunned stranger that she would not go to the hospital because she was “dirty.” According to Romero, “When she says, ‘Dirty,’ [she means] her urine, her system is dirty with crack,” Romero told WABC News.
Muhammed then left the baby girl in the care of Romero.
When Romero picked up the infant, she noticed that the child was moaning and turning blue. Upon further inspection, she was stunned to discover that the umbilical cord was still wrapped around the baby but secured with a shoestring. “I said, Oh, my God! I can’t do this,” Romero explained.
When Romero called 911, they had already received a call by someone who had spotted Muhammad on the streets and thought that the child might be in some kind of danger.
Police and paramedics arrived a short time later to Romero’s residence. One of the paramedics, Carl Gandolfo, ran in to the Romero home and immediately started giving the infant CPR. At a press conference after the incident, Gandolfo fought back tears as he retold how the infant was struggling to survive. He said he was moved because he has a 15-month child and pediatric calls can be heart-wrenching in his line of work.
Meanwhile, police managed to locate Muhammad, who has a criminal past, as she walked the streets not far from where she had abandoned her little girl. She was arrested on a misdemeanor charge.
The infant and Muhammad were taken to a hospital for treatment.
An unidentified young man who claimed to be the child’s father came forward later but would not answer any questions.