Ealing: Body of newborn baby found in canal
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The infant’s body was pulled from the water in Walsall, West Midlands, on May 20 and investigators believe it could have been there for up to four days. A passer-by discovered the baby at around 1pm in a stretch of canal off Hunts Lane. Nearly two months on, police are treating the death of the little boy as a suspected murder.
Officers believe the full-term newborn was “probably not alive” when he was put into the Wyrley and Essington Canal in Rough Wood Country.
West Midlands Police confirmed in a tweet that they are treating the case as murder.
They are still trying to trace the mother of the boy amid concerns for her welfare.
The Crimestoppers charity is offering the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone responsible for offences linked to the baby’s death.
Mick Duthie, director of operations at Crimestoppers, said police believe someone may have information which could help them identify the mother.
He said: “This is a particularly sad, tragic and shocking case for the community, so we are keen to have answers as to what happened and who was involved.
“We are urging anyone who may know something to contact our charity anonymously as soon as possible.
“There is also concern for the wellbeing of the baby’s mother.
“Investigators, who have asked our charity to put up this reward, believe that someone may know or suspect who the mother is.
“We hope that our reward for information given anonymously will help prompt someone’s conscience to speak up and tell us what they know.”
Mr Duthie added: “Everyone who contacts Crimestoppers stays 100 percent anonymous. Always. We have kept this promise for over 32 years.”
In May, shortly after the baby’s body was found, detective chief inspector Jim Munro visited the scene to appeal for information.
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Flowers and teddies were left by passersby as a mark of respect for the baby.
A child’s handwritten note was also placed near the tributes.
DCI Munro said a post-mortem exam revealed the tot died either “during the birthing process or in the hours that immediately followed”.
At the time, the detective, who is leading the investigation, appealed for the baby’s mother to make herself known to authorities “so we can get you the medical support and help that you need”.
He added: “That is our number one priority at this time.
“Also, I am appealing to people who may have information in regards to who mom is, or how the little boy has ended up in the canal.
“I am asking you to come forward, whether that be in confidence, and speak with police, to allow us to understand how the little boy has come to be in the canal.
“But also so we can get mom that support that she desperately needs.”
Anyone with information is asked to call Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111.
Alternatively, you can anonymously fill out an online form at http://www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
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