BATON ROUGE – An abandoned baby was found alive after a sprawling hours-long search involving dogs, drones and a helicopter Wednesday morning.
The search unfolded around 9:30 a.m. off Hooper Road, just east of Plank Road.
Sources told WBRZ a woman had the 8-month-old when she was last seen at an apartment building. She did not have the baby when she arrived at a nearby fire station.
That woman, who may have a mental illness, was reportedly taken into custody.
A woman who identified herself as the baby’s nanny was speaking to WBRZ when she learned the child had been found alive. Officials said the baby was spotted from a helicopter after the mother told first responders where to search.
Police said there are no charges pending at this time for the mother, citing apparent medical issues.
An EMS spokesperson said the infant appeared to be “very healthy” when found by paramedics.
“I’m keeping his mother and other siblings up in a prayer because he was the youngest,” said Angel Hawkins, the baby’s godmother.
Nigel Jackson is the youngest of seven children, who are now being looked after by other family.
As for Nigel he’s spending the night in the hospital only as a precaution.
“He’s doing Nigel. He’s acting like Nas. He’s drinking, and he’s talking and he’s playing,” said Hawkins.
The god mother recalls the hours leading up to the search.
“I wake up, and i get a call and they ask me do i have nigel or have i talked to nigel’s mother, and i was like no… a couple days ago…. and i go back to bed. I got another call and then i got on Facebook, and they had the search and then I just put on my clothes, wash my face, and brush my teeth and went on and helped them with the search,” she said.
The godmother shared with WBRZ more information about the baby’s mother.
“I know she’s a single parent and she has three or four jobs,” Hawkins said.
As of now, the focus is on moving forward.
“Go to church Sunday, check on his mom whenever they are letting us, make sure the kids are okay and ready for school and stuff and just wait for answers to come to us,” Hawkins said.
The mayor’s office released the following statement urging those suffering from mental health problems to seek help.
Thank you to our emergency responders and community members whose quick coordination led to the recovery of the missing infant this morning in Baton Rouge. The Lord guided your efforts today. Should anyone be experiencing a mental health crisis, organizations like Capital Area Human Services are available to the public. Locations are available to walk-ins throughout the area including:
- Baton Rouge Behavioral Health at 2751 Wooddale Blvd
- Children’s Behavioral Health at 422 Colonial Drive
- North Baton Rouge Behavioral Health at 7855 Howell Boulevard
- Capital Area Recovery Program at 2455 Wooddale Boulevard
Capital Area Human Services can be contacted at 225-925-1906.