The Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office is asking for the public's help in searching for the parents of an unidentified female newborn whose body washed ashore in Ventnor in 2004.
The 6-pound infant, known as “Baby Blue,” washed up at Suffolk Avenue on Jan. 17 that year in a yellow laundry bag, acting Prosecutor Jim McClain said in a statement Wednesday.
A man walking on the beach found the bag and dragged it to the Boardwalk, where he opened it and found a sealed black plastic bag, McClain said. Inside that bag was another that held the body of the dead newborn female, with placenta and umbilical cord still attached.
The man, who was not identified by police at the time, called 911, according to a Press article from Jan.19 that year.
Autopsy results revealed the cause of death to be asphyxia due to strangulation, McClain said. A DNA profile determined the baby was 61 percent European Caucasian and 39 percent Asian.
Two additional bags were found nearby that may have been used unsuccessfully to sink the body bag, McClain said.
The wife of the man who found the bag created a local charity, the Baby Blue Foundation, to give the baby a proper burial, resulting in the nickname for the infant.
The foundation grew thereafter into an organization to create awareness and prevent newborn infant fatalities, but it has since shut down.
The co-founder of the organization said in a 2010 interview with The Press that it was struggling and afraid of having to disband.
The parents or any witnesses to the crime have never been located, and the Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office and Ventnor City Police Department continue to search for information.
Anyone with information should call the ACPO Cold Case Unit at 609-909-7800 or Ventnor police at 609-822-2101.
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