A newborn was found unconscious at the D.C. General family shelter on the morning of Feb. 9. The baby girl was rushed to Children’s Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Beverly Fields, the spokesperson for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, tells City Desk that the cause and manner of the child’s death are still pending.

D.C. Police Assistant Chief Peter Newsham says the baby had no signs of infection and that the autopsy had showed no signs of trauma. “The baby was alone in a bassinet,” he says.

According to a resident at the shelter, who was a close friend, the mother had come to D.C. General pregnant in September. Soon after giving birth in early January at a local hospital, she returned to the shelter. The resident said that there were other mothers who also had children during their stays at D.C. General but either chose not to return or to place their newborns with family.

When the mother came back to the shelter, the resident, she received no help from staff taking care of the baby. She said the mother was troubled and appeared overwhelmed.

Telephone messages left for the mother went unreturned.

File photo by Darrow Montgomery