Newborn abandoned with note found at Orlando apartment complex, officials say

Note begged for baby girl to be taken to fire station

ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando police said a newborn girl was found at the Willow Key Apartments on Oct. 6 with a note begging for the infant to be brought to safety.

Officials said the baby girl was fully clothed when she was found and is in good health. 

A representative with the Florida Department of Child and Family Services said the child is now in foster care and an investigation is under way.

The baby was found with a note from someone who pleaded that the child be brought to a fire station or another safe haven location.

"It's sad. You know, a child does not ask to become, to be in this world. So, to drop it off when there's definitely places to go to drop the baby off safely. Churches, hospitals, but here in a complex in a stairwell, you said... I'm sorry, no. That just p--s me off, " said Amanda Barnett, a resident at the complex. 

Barnett and other residents at the complex told News 6 management did not alert them of the incident.

A representative with the apartment complex, who declined an on camera interview, told News 6 they did not feel it was necessary to notify residents of the abandoned baby.

The representative did say they are working with detectives and said they have cameras on the property but only near the clubhouse. 

"That's something I would like to know because, I mean, I don't know if the baby was abandoned by a parent or if the baby was kidnapped and dropped off. I don't know. That's something that's, you know, we should know," Barnett said.

According to Safe Haven for Newborns, a nonprofit organization that works with authorities and DCF, this is the first abandoned baby in the state this year.

According to their numbers, 16 babies have been taken to a safe haven location this year. 

Under Florida law, newborn infants seven days old or younger can be surrendered at a hospital, emergency medical services station or fire station. Parents terminate their parental rights when the baby is surrendered.

The process is anonymous and the parents will not face any legal repercussions. Babies who are surrendered under the safe haven law are turned over to a child-placing agency.

Police are trying to locate the baby's mother and are concerned for her safety. 

Police are offering a $1,000 reward and encourage anyone with any information to call Crimeline at 1-800-423-TIPS.

Click here to read more about Florida's safe haven law.

A newborn baby was found at 5590 Arnold Palmer Drive on Oct. 6, 2017.