One day after a baby was left on the beach in Hawaii, detectives determined that the "Good Samaritan" who found the child and brought her to the hospital was actually the little girl's mother. She has been arrested on charges of filing a false police report and was released after posting bail.
"This poor woman was probably in such a state of desperation and crisis that she felt alone and she felt she had no options. The child could have immediately gone into a loving, approved, supportive adoptive family home rather than to become embroiled in what could become a drawn-out court process," executive director of Hawaii International Child Kristine Altwies told Hawaii News Now.
Keala K. Simeona reported hearing a baby's cry while sitting near the beach on Sunday night. She followed the sound and discovered a newborn had been left on the beach; Simeona then took the child to a nearby hospital, where she was evaluated and is reportedly doing well.
A family court will investigate the matter and determine whether the baby girl will be returned to her family or if parental rights will be terminated. The Department of Human Services is expected to ask the court to order DNA testing for Simeona and anyone identified as the baby's father.
"If you are considering adoption," Altwies said, "and you're pregnant or you have a baby, there is no cost to you. You're provided with the support, the counseling… your medical bills will be covered."
If the family court decides that this is a case of child abandonment, Simeona could face criminal charges and serve time in jail. Police have not said whether they will seek those charges or whether they will simply terminate Simeona's paternal rights.
Doctors have said that the baby girl is doing well on formula milk. Human service officials are tentatively calling the baby "Sandy," as a reference to her discovery.
Watch a video of the incident HERE: