The one-week-old baby girl whose remains were found in the Atlantic Ocean off the Florida coast in June was murdered, police have said.
The dead infant, nicknamed ‘Baby June’ was spotted off Boynton Beach, on June 1 by a local off-duty firefighter who was out fishing and mistook the floating infant for a doll.
Authorities in Palm Beach County Police have now launched a murder investigation, after medical examinations ruled her death a homicide.
Mystery: The body of ‘Baby June’, seen here in a forensic drawing, was found off the coast of Florida, and examinations have now determined the cause of death to be homicide
Baby June was between four and seven days old when she was found some 100ft off shore, and had been in the water for six to 18 hours.
She wore no clothes and was of healthy weight, but police have yet to reveal if there were any signs of abuse.
A DNA test found that she had no known relatives in the local police database, and that she was of ‘unusual’ heritage.
It found that Baby June was half Central Asian, half African, a rare genetic composition usually found in Barbados, Trinidad or Jamaica.
‘We hate seeing this and we want to get to the bottom of what happened,’ Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Capt. Steven Strivelli said according to Fox News.
The child was found 100ft off the Boynton Beach coast by a local firefighter who mistook her for a doll
‘We’re not going to stop here. This case is not going to close until we get completion.’
Capt. Strivelli said evidence such as a clipped umbilical cord and a heel prick in the foot indicates that Baby June was most likely born in a hospital or birthing centre.
However all babies born withing the date range in the Palm Beach and Broward counties have been checked.
Authorities in Florida are offering a $10,000 reward for information which can lead to an arrest.
Baby June was found by Boynton Beach firefighter Chris Lemieux as he was fishing with two friends.
He drove his boat towards the child, which he at first thought was a doll.
He said the child looked dead when he found her.
‘It just blows my mind that you see stuff like that … you think how the heck could somebody do something? I don’t know the situation, but you go through it in your mind: How’d it happen?’ Lemieux said to ABC.