Emma Grace burial tomorrow, search for mother continues
The infant we've come to know as Emma Grace will be buried in Howell Township Saturday. But how her head and body ended up separately among trash at a Farmingdale recycling center last November is still a matter for investigators, and they hope that finding the mother will shed light on it.
No cause or manner of death has been determined by the Middlesex County Medical Examiner, but evidence suggests that the baby breathed before dying, according to information from the office of acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Grammiccioni.
Authorities have now released an artist's sketch of the infant and clothes found during the search, hoping that they will lead them to the woman who gave birth to her. Based on hair characteristics, investigators speculate that the infant was of mixed parentage, possibly Hispanic. She measured 21.5 inches and weighed seven pounds, five ounces.
The full-term baby's headless torso was found early on the afternoon of November 11, 2014, by an employee of ReCommunity Recycling on Railroad Avenue in Farmingdale. An exhaustive search of surrounding debris yielded the head, two bloody blouses, and a bag from a retail complex in Orange, NJ, all of which investigators believe have some connection to the mother.
The blouses contained no tags but the size could be described as petite-to-medium. There is no evidence to suggest that the mother has been a victim of foul play, but investigators have not ruled out the possibility.
A profiling expert with the Federal Bureau of Investigaiton (FBI) suggested to New Jersey State Police that, if the mother placed the body in a dumpster, she might have been trying to conceal her pregnancy before giving birth, authorities said. The agent further speculated that the woman might have been "living a different lifestyle than she was accustomed to, and since birth she may have resumed some of her more normal routines," authorities said.
Members of the Ardena Baptist Church in Howell assumed possession of the remains and named the infant Emma Grace. Her funeral will be Saturday, April 18, at 3:30 PM in the church.
Meanwhile, Monmouth County Crime Stoppers has agreed to pay up to $5,000 for information that leads to the mother's identity. Information can also be emailed anonymously through Monmouth County Crime Stoppers, or by phone at 1-800, 671-4400. Or, text "MONMOUTH" along with the tip to 274637.
Detective Sergeant Francis Robina of the NJSP Major Crime Unit can be reached at 609-882-2000 ext. 2538. Detective Brian Weisbrot of the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office can be reached at 1-800-533-7443.
Investigators assigned to the case now include the NJSP Major Crime Unit, Troop "C" Criminal Investigations Office, Crime Scene Investigation Central Unit, the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office and the Middlesex County Medical Examiner's Office.