Detectives Investigating After Fetus Found in Bathroom at Ralphs in San Fernando Valley: LAPD
Police were investigating after a fetus was found in the bathroom of a Ralphs on Burbank Boulevard Wednesday afternoon, officials said.
The fetus, believed to be about 6 months into gestation, was found inside a toilet at the grocery store at 14400 Burbank Blvd., on the border of Van Nuys and Sherman Oaks, according to Los Angeles Police Sgt. Hector Guzman.
The incident was reported around 3:10 p.m. after a bystander came across the fetus and called 911. Aerial footage from Sky5 showed that at least three squad cars remained on scene after 4 p.m.
Authorities have located the mother and were questioning her.
It was unknown whether any charges would be filed since it was too early to speculate whether there was criminal intent, Guzman said.
“We can be looking at something as a medical emergency. We’ve all heard of people that have actually delivered not knowing that they were in a pregnancy,” the sergeant said. “Or you could possibly be looking at a crime, but that’s something that our experts from the juvenile division will be determining.”
It was unknown whether the fetus was considered live at birth, he added.
Ralphs spokesperson John Votava told KTLA via phone: “It’s a sad, unfortunate situation, and we are cooperating with local law enforcement.”
The grocery store’s operating hours were not impacted by incident, as it remained open during the investigation.
KTLA’s Taylor Martinez contributed to this report.