Questions remain after dead baby found in Kohl's restroom

Published: Aug. 8, 2013 at 10:16 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 23, 2013 at 1:51 AM EDT
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Sherry Johnson
Sherry Johnson
Jennifer Hall
Jennifer Hall
LMPD Spokesperson Alicia Smiley
LMPD Spokesperson Alicia Smiley

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Louisville Metro police are investigating after a dead baby was discovered inside of a department store.

It happened inside the Kohl's located at 11811 Standiford Plaza Drive off of Preston Highway in Hillview.

Police say the baby appeared to be near-term, but they aren't sure if it was still born or if the baby passed away after birth. Louisville Metro Police spokesperson Alicia Smiley says there were no obvious signs of trauma.

"It kind of eery to know that you just walked into a store where that happened at," said Jennifer Hall, shopper.

At first shoppers weren't exactly sure what was going inside the Kohl's when police and EMS showed up at the store.

"The only thing that we had seen was we were not allowed to go into the restroom, so police have got it all blocked off," said Sherry Johnson, shopper.

What Johnson didn't realize was the body of a baby was found inside that restroom. "You're going to make me cry," said Johnson. "If I thought it was a baby. No, no it's not good."

The disturbing discovery happened at 5:45 p.m. when someone called 911, but police aren't exactly sure who made that call.

Homicide detectives kept the store open, but closed the restroom which bothered some customers.

"I thought they would have shut it down especially knowing that it happened 20 minutes before we got here," said Hall. "I just thought they would have investigated it a little more and completely closed off the store."

Initial reports indicated the baby was found in a trash can, but Smiley could not confirm.

It's still unclear who the mother is and if the baby was delivered in the store or brought there.

"We will have to await the coroner and the medical examiner to see exactly whether or not this baby was fully to term, also whether or not it was still born, whether or not it had actually lived at that point, those are details we just don't have because it is so early in the investigation," said Smiley.

Kohl's did not want to comment beyond saying they are cooperating with police leading the investigation.

Police say they currently going over store surveillance footage. At this time it's too early to tell what charges could be filed in this case.

If you have any information that could help police you are asked to call 502-574-LMPD.

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