CHICAGO (CBS) — The teenage parents of an abandoned baby brought to a Chicago firehouse earlier this week have been charged with attempted murder, and the newborn’s grandmother has been charged with lying about finding the infant in an alley near the fire station.
At a court hearing on Friday, the teens were released into the custody of their parents and ordered not to have any contact with the baby.
The grandmother, Karla Antimo, was be released on a recognizance bond. Her attorney, Ruben Herrera, said she was allowed to go free pending trial because she was the one who took the baby to the firehouse and has no criminal history, a steady job and a family.
Herrera said Antimo is “very elated and thankful” the baby is improving.
Antimo, 37, brought the newborn baby to the fire station in the Hermosa neighborhood on Tuesday afternoon, claiming she had heard the newborn crying and found him on top of a garbage can in the alley in the 1700 block of North Keystone Avenue.
Police said in reality her son’s 16-year-old girlfriend had given birth to the baby in a bathroom at home in the 3500 block of North Pulaski Road in the morning.
The pregnancy was allegedly a secret from boy and girl’s parents, according to prosecutors.
State’s attorneys say the couple then wrapped the infant in a towel and placed him on top of a garbage can in the alley, tried concealing the blood, and the new mother allegedly told a neighbor she had a miscarriage when they were seen cleaning.
The girl’s mother asked the neighbor to call police because the girl was bleeding. The girl and the mother then went to a hospital in an ambulance, but the baby’s father did not go with them, prosecutors say.
The 17-year-old boyfriend later took the Metra back to the area where the baby had been left, put him in a bag, and placed him in the garbage can, according to prosecutors. Shortly after that, he called his mother, telling her the baby was dead. Prosecutors say Antimo also thought the baby was dead until he made a noise as they drove with him. Antimo then took the baby’s father home, picked up another person and drove the baby to the firehouse shortly after 4 p.m.
“This incident could have been handled differently, especially when the grandmother got involved, because she’s not a child. She’s not a teenager,” Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said. “At least she did have the wherewithal though to take the baby to a firehouse.”
Paramedic field chief Pat Fitzmaurice said “the baby was cold as the concrete” when he got to the fire station. Paramedics worked on the baby, who was not breathing and had no pulse, for more than a half hour before emergency room workers took over.
He was taken to Norwegian American Hospital and later transferred to Lurie Children’s Hospital, where he was in serious condition on Friday. Prosecutors say he is likely to remain in the NICU for at least another two weeks.
Police confirmed Thursday the 16-year-old girl is the baby’s mother. The day after the incident, Antimo and her husband called police and admitted the baby is her grandson, and she had lied about finding him in the alley near the fire station.
The 16-year-old girl and her 17-year-old boyfriend have been charged with attempted murder. Antimo has been charged with disorderly conduct.