PITTSBURGH – A woman was charged with abuse of a corpse Thursday after police found the remains of a baby in her freezer.
Police charged Christine Hutchinson, 22, of Pittsburgh, after interviewing her Thursday evening, several hours after the remains were found in her apartment.
Officers got a tip from someone who knew Hutchinson that there was "possibly a baby that was dead and was in a freezer in an apartment in Bloomfield," a working-class neighborhood several miles east of downtown, Pittsburgh police Cmdr. Thomas Stangrecki said.
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Detectives found what initially appeared to be a late-term fetus in a brown bag in the freezer, police said, though it wasn't immediately clear whether the remains resulted from a miscarriage, late-term abortion or a death shortly after birth.
But later, Lt. Daniel Herrmann said the abuse of a corpse charge applies only to human beings. Under the law, he said, a fetus is not considered a human being.
An autopsy was scheduled for Friday. Police said that they did not believe the death was recent but gave no further details.
Police also questioned the woman's ex-boyfriend but said they do not believe he was the father. He was not charged.
Hutchinson was in custody awaiting arraignment late Thursday. A criminal complaint and police affidavit were not immediately released.
It was not immediately known whether Hutchinson had an attorney.
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