Baby 59¿s condition was said to be stable and he should recover, but his discovery – head first in a toilet waste pipe – has succeeded in outraging a country in which brutal acts against youngsters are a common occurrence
The mother of the Chinese new-born found trapped in a sewer pipe claimed she fell pregnant following a one night stand – and then the father of the baby boy abandoned her.
The 22-year-old woman – who has not been named – also said she could not afford an abortion or cope with the stigma of being a single mum.
Chinese media said she went to the shared bathroom in a residential complex when she felt abdominal cramps last Saturday and gave birth.
Being nursed back to health: The abandoned baby boy is pictured being fed in hospital after firefighters rescued him from a sewage pipe after he was apparently flushed down a toilet in Jinhua, Zhejiang Province
Reunited: The baby boy’s mother – believed to be a 22-year-old single woman – has been found and is said to be with her baby in hospital
The 22-year-old woman is believed to have raised the initial alarm but only confessed to police after they searched her rented room
But she said the baby slipped into the sewer pipe and she was unable to free him.
She also claimed she was the first to raise the initial alarm and the watched the entire two-hour rescue in secret.
‘The girl told the landlord she had heard a ‘kitten-like’ sound in the fourth-floor squat toilet. The landlord later called the police and fire fighters for help,’ one of the investigating police officers in the eastern city of Jinhua told the Daily Mail.
Police are still investigating if her version of the harrowing events were true or if the infant boy was dumped intentionally into the 10cm/four inch sewer pipe.
The woman, a restaurant worker, reportedly confessed to being the mother after officers found blood-stained tissues and toys in her room and asked her to undergo a medical check.
Injured: A nurse said the baby boy – who weighs 6.2 pounds – suffered a fracture to his skull but is now in a stable condition
Staff at the Pujiang County People’s Hospital in Jinhua, Zhejiang Province, said well-wishers have visited the hospital with diapers, baby clothes and powered milk for the child
Recovering: The baby boy has been nicknamed number 59 after the number of his incubator
‘The woman said she felt too embarrassed to call the police herself as a single mother and feeling under societal pressure. Girls like her can are easy targets for public criticism,’ the police officer added.
The woman said she had sex with a man and didn’t realize she was pregnant until early January.
She was too scared to tell her parents so hid her pregnancy by wearing loose clothes and wrapping cloth tightly around her abdomen.
The man she claims is the father has denied it is his baby, according to media reports.
Video of the two-hour rescue of ‘Baby No 59’ – so named because of his incubator number in the hospital – have been shown worldwide, prompting both horror and an outpouring of charity on behalf of the newborn.