OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Last Monday, someone dropped a bag on a stranger’s porch. Inside, the homeowners found a newborn baby. Thursday, Maria Paiz-Perez was arraigned and charged for abandoning that baby.
Witnesses say Paiz-Perez looked for a home with someone inside, found one, dropped off her baby boy in a duffel bag and drove off.
The 28-year-old was in court Thursday via telecommunication to prevent the spread of COVID-19. She is charged with one count of child abuse and one count of abandonment. Prosecutors say she admitted to giving birth to the baby at home and leaving it on a stranger’s porch.
The baby and mother are both doing okay but it is not yet known why she didn't deliver the baby in a hospital or drop him off at a fire station or hospital. Under Nebraska's Safe Haven Law, that could've prevented her from being charged with a crime.
"I think one could assume that since she had the child in her own home, it appears that she delivered the child solely on her own, that she probably wasn't aware about our Safe Haven Laws here in the state of Neberaska," Omaha city prosecutor Matthew Kuhse said.
A $150,000 bond was set at 10% for Paiz-Perez. Each count she faces is punishable by up to a year in jail. The judge said she is not allowed to have contact with the baby.