Investigators are trying to find the mother of a newborn boy found dead inside of a cooler at a Chicago Ridge recycling center Wednesday morning.
An employee made the discovery at Resource Management Company, at 10111 Anderson Ave., at about 4:30 a.m. The boy was wrapped in a blanket with the umbilical cord attached, according to Chicago Ridge Fire Chief Rob Pyznarski.
The cooler was picked up at a location in either Waukegan, IL or Pleasant Prairie, WI, and investigators were in the process of contacting authorities in those two cities.
An autopsy will be performed on the baby on Thursday.
"At that point we will know more and can determine what type of investigation this is," said Chicago Ridge Deputy Police Chief Paul Landry.
Once the body was discovered, "everything comes to a stop, the authorities come in and it then becomes a crime scene," he said. Police were at the facility processing the scene and investigating for about five to six hours, he said.
The company employees "handled it quite well," he said. "Everybody initially was very distraught."
Because the discovery came near the end of a shift, "we’ll see" how those employees are doing "when they come back later this evening," he said.
Under Illinois' Safe Haven law, parents are allowed to relinquish custody of an unharmed newborn up to 30 days old to personnel at a hospital, emergency medical care facility, police or fire station.
Parents can give up their child anonymously and without the threat of prosecution for abandonment. Troubled parents can find more information at SaveAbandonedBabies.org.