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Mother jailed after she placed her days old baby in a travel cooler and abandoned it by the side of the road; the child’s remains were found 1 week later

According to the court documents, the 20-year-old mother was sentenced to 23 years in prison after she reportedly admitted to killing her newborn daughter in 2019. The mother reportedly placed her days old infant in a travel cooler. She then closed the cooler and left it by the side of the road. The baby was found one week later by a man who called the authorities. “So I was at the club. So I seen what was in this book bag, and it’s a baby in here. It’s a dead baby. It’s a dead baby, yes. I’m right here where the baby at now. Yeah, I’m about to have a heart attack.” the 911 caller reportedly said.

The mother from Georgia, Caroline Propes, was sentenced on Friday, Dec. 10. The sentenced also includes seven years of probation following the defendant’s release from prison. On Wednesday, the defendant pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and second-degree child cruelty after her defense team reached a deal with prosecutors, according to reports.

The child’s, Eliza Warner, remains were discovered Jan. 6, 2019 on the side of Boy Scout Road. Prosecutors said the baby was discovered by a man who called 91. “So I was at the club. So I seen what was in this book bag, and it’s a baby in here. It’s a dead baby. It’s a dead baby, yes. I’m right here where the baby at now. Yeah, I’m about to have a heart attack.” the 911 caller reportedly said.

Other witnesses told authorities that the cooler had been sitting by the roadside for 1 week. An autopsy determined that the little girl died of asphyxiation. Prosecutors said that it took more than 1 year of investigation before authorities were able to make an arrest. 

Authorities arrested the mother in March 2020 and charged her with multiple charges. Sheriff Woodruff said that the mother reportedly told investigators that she put the newborn in the brightly colored cooler hoping it would draw attention from passersby.

Sheriff Woodruff said:

“She panicked and put the baby in the cooler, to bring it down there in hopes that somebody would see the cooler, stop, pick it up, and take it home with them. She used the cooler to keep the baby warm but did not realize that it was air-tight when zipped shut, which resulted in the infant suffocating to death. It was too late when someone found it.”

According to reports, the mother was living with her parents at the time. She managed to have the baby in secret and abandoned her newborn baby in the cooler shortly after giving birth, prosecutors said.