A court sentenced a California mother on March 16 to 14 years in prison for burying her newborn child under a pile of rubble.
Porche Laronda Washington, 33, was arrested nearly a week after she abandoned her baby in Compton in November 2015, KTLA reports.
Two women out walking found the infant wrapped in a blanket and hidden inside a hole in the ground. They immediately called the police, who took the child to hospital. The baby is reportedly in good condition.
"I still didn't believe it. It was more of a disbelief," Deputy Adam Colette said after authorities discovered the newborn, the Cerritos-Artesia Patch reports. "When I'm holding the baby, looking down on it, I'm going, 'The baby's fine, it's going to be OK' ... I think the baby definitely had a touch of God that day."
Her mother was charged with both child abuse and attempted murder. She has been in jail since police arrested her in December.
Washington had concealed her pregnancy from family and friends.
"She did not want to deliver, she was afraid, she did not want people to know she was pregnant," Sgt. Richard Ruiz said. "Once we identified her through the hospital, we reached out to people who knew her."
Washington is just one of many mothers who abandon their children for a variety of reasons, the Daily Mail reports.
“I can see why people must think I am the worst mother in the world,” said 23-year-old Katherine Penny, who captured international attention after she left her baby at an airport in Portugal. “I purposefully left my son. I accept that and I'm totally to blame. But I was so depressed, I'm sure I can prove it was postnatal, and we had terrible money problems. I couldn't afford a passport for Charlie and I reached breaking point and wasn't thinking straight at all, I just lost it.”
Despite her reasons, she feels tremendous regret.
“I know none of that should ever have meant me leaving him and I want him back more than anything. I know I need help and I am determined to try and get my son back so we can all be a family again,” Penny added.