Arrest made after newborn is found alive in gas station trash can

A newborn was found in a trash can in the bathroom of this Fullerton gas station
A newborn was found in a trash can in the bathroom of this Fullerton gas station on Thursday. The child, a boy, was in critical but stable condition at a local hospital.

A 25-year-old woman was arrested early Friday morning after a newborn was found abandoned in a gas station restroom.

First responders, including Fullerton police officers, were called Thursday to the gas station in the 900 block of West Orangethorpe Avenue when the baby was found. The child was quickly transported to a local hospital in critical but stable condition.

KCAL-TV reported from the scene that the baby, a boy, was found initially by a gas station employee and had been abandoned within an hour of birth.

Police arrested Venissa Maldonado of Fullerton after serving a search warrant at 1:45 a.m. at the 400 block of West Orangethorpe Avenue, just a short distance from the gas station.

Police linked Maldonado to the baby using surveillance footage and finding what they believed was her vehicle, according to a statement from the Fullerton police.


Maldonado was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and felony child abuse.

Under state law, a parent or a person with lawful custody can safely surrender an infant within 72 hours of birth, with no questions asked. But there are some rules. The baby must be taken to a hospital, fire station or other safe surrender site designated by the county Board of Supervisors.

Anyone with information can contact Fullerton Police Det. Marcus Saenz at (714) 738-5361. Those wishing to provide information anonymously can call Orange County Crime Stoppers at (855) 847-6227.