EASTPOINTE, Mich. >> A woman whose baby was found dead at a Detroit-area recycling center weeks after she gave birth alone in an unheated garage was charged Wednesday with murder and child abuse.
The boy, born just a few days before Christmas, "must have suffered greatly" while left in the garage with low temperatures in the 30s, Roseville Police Chief James Berlin said.
Angela Alexie, 24, appeared in court in handcuffs, with her head down and her long hair covering her face as a detective offered details about a case that has gripped the region for two weeks. She said she had no permanent address or job.
Investigators initially believed the baby might be a missing newborn from the Lansing area, 85 miles west, but tests ruled that out. Police were stumped about the boy’s identity until crucial tips rolled in due to news coverage.
Eastpointe Judge Carl Gerds set bond at $1 million and said he would appoint a lawyer for Alexie.
She told investigators that she gave birth in a garage in Eastpointe on Dec. 22, behind a home where she was living temporarily, Berlin said. The infant survived just a few days, likely dying due to exposure.
"She made statements that she’d go out every couple hours, try to feed him and see if he was all right until he passed away," the police chief said.
The body was discovered on Jan. 14 at a recycling center nearby in Roseville.
Alexie denied placing the body in a recycling bin for curbside pickup, Berlin said, but "we believe she acted alone."
He said she did not give a reason for her actions.
Alexie had three other children, ages 1 to 4, but doesn’t have custody of them. The 1-year-old was also born without medical assistance, Berlin said.