WARNING: THIS STORY IS GRAPHIC IN NATURE
SALEM, Ore. - Some homeowners discovered the remains of a newborn infant on their property and investigators are trying to find out how the dead child got there.
Police were called to a home in the 4700 block of Carolina Avenue N.E. following the discovery by the homeowner's dog, a six-month old dog named Princess.
According to the homeowner, Gladis Bermudez, at around 10 p.m. Wednesday night, Bermudez's son called for the dog to come back inside the home. The dog came running to the back door and she was carrying something in her mouth.
"The dog had something in their mouth and I said, 'What happened to the dog?' And then my son was coming and he said, 'Hey! What happened?' and he (hit the dog) on the head. He said, 'Oh my god. This is a baby,'" Bermudez said.
Bermudez said she didn't know if the baby was a boy or a girl. She said it was very small and detectives believe it was a newborn. Bermudez cooperated with police and the remains were sent to the State Medical Examiners Office for autopsy.
Investigators, who returned to the Bermudez's yard Thursday for a short time, are asking for the public's help in figuring out how the newborn ended up on the property. They are specifically interested in learning about anyone who was recently pregnant and isn't any more, with no baby in sight. Neighbors, like Angie Tucker, however, said they don't remember seeing anything out of the ordinary.
"I've gone through postpartum depression, I know how low you can feel on that aspect, but to just abandon your baby, for it to just die, I can't even imagine that," said Tucker, who just gave birth to her daughter Bailey 10 days ago.
Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Matt Wilkinson at (503) 540-8007 or contact him by email.
Oregon has what they call a Safe Haven law to protect newborns from being abandonded in such a way. A mother can leave their baby (up to 30 days old) with an employee at any medical facility, hospital, fire station, birthing center or police station.
KATU Reporter Dan Tilkin contributed to this report.