Police: Woman expected baby to die in garbage can

August 6, 2014 - 3:05 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indianapolis woman whose co-workers found her newborn son gasping for air in a garbage can told a detective she expected the boy to die after she gave birth in a warehouse restroom and dumped the child in the trash, according to court documents.

Briana Holland, 22, was arrested and charged with attempted murder and child neglect after the boy was found Friday night with his head covered in a bag, trash in his mouth and toilet paper wrapped around his neck, court documents said. A judge entered a preliminary not guilty plea on her behalf Wednesday.

The co-workers and a nurse at the warehouse cared for the boy, who was purple and cold when he was discovered, until medics arrived and took him to a hospital, according to court documents. He's now in the custody of child welfare officials.

Holland's boyfriend told police she had kept her pregnancy secret from her family and hadn't received any prenatal care. He said he found out about her giving birth on Twitter and intends to seek custody of the child, according to a police affidavit.

The affidavit said Holland told a detective she was scared and couldn't afford to care for her son. When asked what she thought would happen to the baby she replied: "I know what the results would probably be. It would probably die," according to the affidavit.

Defense attorney Chadwick Hill didn't immediately return a telephone message from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Indiana has a safe haven law that allows people to give up custody of infants less than 30 days old to a hospital emergency room, police or fire station. A fire station is located across the street from the warehouse where Holland worked.

Since the safe haven law was enacted in 2000, nearly 140 infants have been left with emergency services providers, according to the Indiana Department of Child Services.