Bilbao, Spain, Oct 20 (EFE).- Police in northern Spain on Thursday arrested a woman who is suspected of kidnapping a newborn baby from a hospital in Bilbao having gained access to the building by masquerading as a health care worker.
Her arrest came just hours after the newborn was found abandoned, but in good health, on a doormat on the eighth floor of an apartment complex in the city in Spain’s Basque region.
The newborn was discovered by the occupants of the apartment at around 8am local time after the suspect allegedly rang the doorbell and fled the scene.
Zuhaitz Barriuso, whose mother opened the door to find the baby, told local media that they had seen the news of the kidnapping and immediately called the police.
The newborn was taken to hospital by ambulance and has been reunited with the parents.
Regional Basque police arrested the suspect, a 24-year-old woman, at 10.45am, in the city’s Zorrotza neighborhood, where she was found with a friend in a local square, investigative sources said.
The traumatic ordeal began around 9pm local time on Wednesday night when the suspect entered the Hospital Basurto in Bilbao.
Once inside the hospital, the suspect made her way to the obstetrics and gynecology department, where, under the pretense of carrying out medical checks, she removed the newborn and left the building.
The suspect had made several kidnap attempts that same night, according to the regional security minister, Josu Erkoreka.
“Everything seems to indicate that this woman tried to kidnap several babies during the night,” he told reporters Thursday.
“It appears that, just before, she tried and failed to take other newborns, entering several rooms where there were women who had given birth.”
The suspect was last seen on CCTV footage at 11pm, with the baby in her arms and wearing a white, short-sleeve T-shirt, leggings with a printed design, sneakers and a black bag.
During the police search, officers raided the suspect’s address in the Santutxu neighborhood of the city, which is near to the historic Old Town.
The suspect had allegedly told her neighbors that she was pregnant and, along with her parents, had bought items such as baby clothing and a pushchair, local residents told Efe. EFE