Mother Tied Plastic Bag Around Newborn’s Neck, Left Him In Trash

STREAMWOOD, Ill. (CBS) — A 19-year-old northwest suburban woman gave birth to a full-term baby boy in a Salvation Army store bathroom last week, then wrapped a plastic bag around his neck, put him in a garbage bag and covered his body with paper towels.

The boy was born alive, weighing 6 pounds, 11 ounces, and it took 3-1/2 to 6 minutes for the infant to die by strangulation, authorities said.

Jessica Cruz, of the 2000 block of Osage Lane in Hanover Park, was charged with first-degree murder and concealment of a homicidal death, according to Streamwood police. In court Wednesday, Judge Jill Marisi ordered her held without bond, Cook County State’s Attorney’s office spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said.

Cruz walked into the Salvation Army store at 1080 Barrington in Streamwood about 10 a.m. on Nov. 4 and asked to use the bathroom. That’s where she gave birth to the boy, then placed him in a plastic garbage bag and tied the bag tightly around his neck, court records said.

She then placed the bag in a garbage can and covered the baby with paper towels to conceal him. She cleaned up the blood and left the store, but entered a second store about a half-mile away a short time later, using the restroom there as well, court records said.

Employees at the second store found blood in the bathroom and Cruz was captured on video surveillance. Employees at the Salvation Army store found the infant in the garbage can.

An autopsy found the baby had an umbilical cord and placenta still attached and the garbage bag tightly wrapped around his neck. After the doctor removed the bag, they noticed ligature marks on the neck consistent with having a bag tightly tied. The boy suffered a neck hemorrhage and the cause of death was ruled homicide by strangulation, prosecutors said.

Three witnesses from the Salvation Army store identified Cruz as the person who entered the bathroom and left it bloody. Four witnesses at the second store also positively identified Cruz.

Cruz admitted to police that she gave birth to the boy in the bathroom and didn’t look to see what sex he was. He was alive and moving when she put him in the plastic bag and wrapped it around his neck and put him in the garbage, she told police.

Cruz told authorities she didn’t tell anyone she was pregnant except for the baby’s father, even though she lived with her mother during the pregnancy. She also admitted to pretending to be her mother when police called her home, prosecutors said.

Cruz has no criminal history and will appear for a preliminary hearing at the Rolling Meadows courthouse on Dec. 2., Simonton said.

  • dby

    do the same thing to her that she did to the baby. na to easy. strap her in the chair and throw the switch. and then say’ next in line no waiting’ come on down.

  • US Citizen

    Vicky, you’re an ass! This is only a reflection of a single individual. Normal people are appalled by this kind of crime. The only reason some other countries hate the US is out of pure jealousy!!!

    • Roberta Waker

      Why is it necessary to resort to name calling? As a society our values have changed because the punishment doesn’t match the crime. At best she will get life in some country club prison where we will support her with room and board, medical, dental, education, etc., etc. There is no reason for any country to be jealous of us – we are morally and financially bankrupt. This once great country is being ruined because of greed. Jealous – I don’t think so; they’re too busy laughing at us.

  • yup


  • FED UP


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  • RIP Little One

    Rest in Peace little one. You did not deserve to die. Sad to think in this day and age some girls feel they have no other choice. I am sure she was very scared and felt that she had no support. Who knows what her reasoning was, but with so many places she could have gone to, so sad she did not go for help. Now she will pay the price, spend time in jail.

  • Dave

    If only she had done the same thing just a few months before, with a doctor’s assistance. She would have been judged to have done nothing wrong.

    • Karina Mata

      well said!

  • maria lopez

    Rip little one.

  • Nancy J.

    This is why we need to continue to educate people, especially those who may be new to the United States and/or Illinois. If that young woman had only known she could have dropped her newborn baby off at a police station, fire station or hospital with no questions asked, that dear baby boy would have been welcomed into a loving, adoptive home and the woman would not be headed to prison. Was she so hopeless and helpless and ignorant that she thought throwing her problem, a human in the trash, was the answer? Educate young women and men on the Illinois Abandoned Baby Act. Save a life. Educate. Spread the word.

    • acrawford

      she is a grown women she knew what she could do she just chose to do the wrong thing …. you should have no sympathy for her

  • Jim Hamilton

    My wife and I would have taken him :(
    She is 19 years old, she knows better, don’t feel sorry for this evil person. The baby is dead and she had options and she knows she had options the number one option is be a mom.
    Moms have been doing it for years!

  • Skyler

    I agree with Jim….. It doesn’t matter what race you are or what country you come from, she was 19 and I am more then certain she knew right from wrong. Where is the babies father in all of this, I am pretty sure there is more to this story, but we are only gettng the back end of it, regardless, what she did was wrong and with every thing you do in life there is a consequence, now she can think about what she took away from this lil boy, a life he could have had with a loving caring family who can’t have kids, I hope that she can no longer bare children, that to me is great punishment, a lifetime sentence is nothing, she will be warm, sleep, eat and still live while that helpless child is a lil angel in heaven. RIP lil fella……

  • k.crawford

    after jessica serves her time she should be deported back to mexico.

  • stacey

    What an awful cruel animal this thing is! She could have just left the baby there why kill him?? She should get life in prison and be forced to be fixed! Because she never deserves to be caring for a child ever!

  • Young Mom

    I been following this story since it came out. & yet till this day I cant stand to see she gets to live when she took her own sons life! Im a young mom too had a baby at 19 and never did I think of killing him. I was praying she gets the death penalty… Sooner or later she’ll pay.. God see’s everything.

  • Rod

    who said she was from mexico? besides she is US born.she looks like a philippina to me.

  • Proud mommy

    This has nothing to do with race. The only thing that matters is that she gets punished for this horrible crime. That little angel didn’t deserve this and I pray that he is resting peacefully. I’m a 20 year old mom to a 1year old boy he is my happiness so I just don’t understand why anyone could do this to an innocent baby.

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