A stillborn baby was found in a hospital bed sheet at a Red Wing, Minn. laundry service on Tuesday.
The baby was born at Regions Hospital in St. Paul and healthcare officials are not certain how the baby ended up in the laundry. They have extended "deep apologies to the family for this terrible mistake."
It was a 22-week-old baby and was wrapped in sheets in a morgue when it was taken to the laundry facility.
Police were called to Crothall Laundry in the afternoon but a hospital worker picked up the baby before the police were able to see it.
"There's so much we don't know because we don't have the body," Red Wing Chief Roger Pohlman said.
The baby's race and gender has not been identified, but the laundry service staff showed police a photo of the body.
Detectives are working on the case with the Ramsey County medical examiner.
"We're calling it a death investigation at this time," Pohlman said.
Chris Boese, chief nursing officer, said that the hospital should have had procedures to prevent it from happening.
"This was a terrible mistake, and we are deeply sorry," Boese said. "We have processes in place that should have prevented this but did not. We are working to identify the gap in our system and to make sure this does not happen again."
A spokesperson for the laundry service declined to comment and is likely to release a statement.