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Tuesday 6 December 2016

Gardai plead with mum of baby Maria to 'let us know you are safe'

APPEAL

Sgt Maeve O Sullivan, Clondalkin Garda Station Child Protection Unit with Rita Byrne, Principal Social Worker at the Child and Family Agency Tusla,and Supt Brendan Connolly, Clondalkin Garda station, pictured with 3 replica items which they put on display during the renewal information appeal in relation to the discovery of a new born baby last Friday at Steelstown lane Rathcoole, at Clondalkin Garda station
Sgt Maeve O Sullivan, Clondalkin Garda Station Child Protection Unit with Rita Byrne, Principal Social Worker at the Child and Family Agency Tusla,and Supt Brendan Connolly, Clondalkin Garda station, pictured with 3 replica items which they put on display during the renewal information appeal in relation to the discovery of a new born baby last Friday at Steelstown lane Rathcoole, at Clondalkin Garda station
The scene at Windmill Lane Rathcoole where a baby was found abandoned

The newborn girl, found in pouring rain last Friday, has now been named Maria by those caring for her in the Coombe Hospital.

The newborn girl, found in pouring rain last Friday, has now been named Maria by those caring for her in the Coombe Hospital.

Gardai have said they have received some calls from the public following initial appeals, and displayed replicas of the blanket and bags that were used to wrap the baby found at Steelstown Lane near Rathcoole last Friday afternoon in the hope that it would jog the memories of people who might have more information.

READ MORE: Fresh appeal made to mum of baby 'Maria' to come forward

The light brown-coloured fleece blanket, of the ‘Home’ brand from a Primark store, was used to wrap the baby along with a small baby-blue cloth or towel, and the baby was then wrapped in a black plastic bin liner and placed within a paper Marks and Spencer shopping bag.

READ MORE: Baby to be fostered as fears for mum grow

Superintendent Brendan Connolly, from Clondalkin Garda Station, stressed that the mother has nothing to fear and the matter will be handled with compassion and sensitivity.

Tusla, the child and family agency, has also stressed that the mother will not be forced to take responsibility for the child, but it is important she has a say in its future with regards to fostering or adoption processes.

Both Tusla and the gardai reiterated that their major concern is for the mother who could be in physical, emotional and mental distress, and possibly may have acted under duress or fear.

Tusla yesterday secured an Interim Care Order for the child in the Family Court.

The court heard details of a report from a consultant from the Coombe Hospital that said that the baby needs ongoing treatment both there and at Our Lady’s Hospital, Crumlin.

He anticipated a good outcome but an Interim Care Order was needed so that treatment could be given, RTE Radio’s Sean O’Rourke Show reported.

Doctors also sought permission to carry out a DNA test.

READ MORE: Baby found in plastic bag treated in hospital as fears grow for mum

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Tusla’s solicitor said the DNA test would assist in establishing parentage if and when the mother comes forward.

Judge Brendan Toale granted the Interim Care Order.

Supt Connolly, who confirmed that the child is Caucasian, yesterday stressed the concern for the welfare of the baby’s mother.

“This mum has nothing to fear. We are here to help and the matter will be dealt with compassionately and sensitively,” he said.

“We have had some help from the public but we appeal for anyone who has any more information to come forward.”

Sgt O’Sullivan, and Rita Byrne, principal social worker with the child and family agency Tusla, also appealed for the mother to make herself known because of concerns for her welfare.

“Our hope is mammy will come forward and contact us,” said Ms Byrne, adding that Tusla will be seeking legal advice in relation to baby Maria's future.

“We are very concerned for the mother’s welfare. She may need medical treatment and we will deal with her sensitively,” echoed Sgt O’Sullivan.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Clondalkin Garda Station on 01 6667600 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666111 or at any garda station.

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