WHEATON, Il. — A woman was indicted in the case of “Baby Hope,” an infant who was found dead in unincorporated Wheaton in 2016.
Police had been searching for the child’s parents since Aug. 15, 2016 when the baby’s body was found in a backpack. A resident had spotted the bag in the middle of a private drive that morning. Later in the day, two landscapers discovered the dead newborn with dark hair inside the bag.
Authorities were able to match the baby’s DNA profile to the woman who was indicted, but her identity is still unknown. She is being referred to as Jane Doe. She was indicted on a charge of failure to report the death or disappearance of a child — a Class 4 felony. If a single tip pointed to the infant’s mother, a DNA test can confirm her identity.
“And we believe she’s still out there and without the public’s help, I don’t believe we’ll be able to solve this case,” Detective Dan Dorpat, DuPage County Sheriff’s Department, said.
In May 2018, DuPage County officials released information regarding the items found at the scene.
Authorities released pictures of the backpack, along with a brown bathmat and toilet seat cover found inside the backpack.
Investigators also released composite sketches.
The investigators said, based on DNA, both the mother and father of “Baby Hope” are of Latino ancestry.
Detectives also said, based on “Baby Hope’s” DNA, that they believe the mother was taking a medication called Lamotrigine, also called Lamictal. It is commonly used for treatment of epilepsy, seizures, bipolar disorder or sleeping disorders.
NCMEC and the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office have asked anyone with information to please call NCMEC at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).