A teenage mother is facing charges after being caught on video throwing her newborn baby into a rubbish skip.
Alexis Avila, 18, told US authorities she was not even aware she was pregnant until the day before she gave birth and ‘panicked’ when the child was born.
People scavenging in the bin in Hobbs, New Mexico, heard what they thought was a ‘dog or kitten’ behind a bag of rubbish and found the baby, wrapped in a towel in a plastic rubbish bag with its umbilical cord still attached.
They kept the boy warm until police and paramedics arrived. He had been in the skip for about six hours before he was discovered.
‘Their collective quick response was absolutely pivotal in saving his life,’ Hobbs police chief August Fons said.
The baby was transferred to hospital in Lubbock, Texas, and is in a stable condition.
Investigators used CCTV to identify a car at the scene, which led them to Ms Avila. She told them she was not aware of her condition until she experienced abdominal pains and unexpectedly gave birth.
‘She explained that she did not know what to do or who to call,’ Mr Fons added.
Ms Avila told police who the father was, however police said he will not be identified as he is a juvenile.
Prosecutors said she will be charged with attempted murder, or an alternative felony of child abuse, at a preliminary hearing at Lea County district court.
Acting chief of Hobbs police department, August Fons, said he had not encountered a case such as this previously.
‘If you are struggling with a new infant, the best response is to find somebody who can help you with that,’ he said.
‘Contact us, and let us help you through the situation.’