Police have charged Pennsylvania teenager with attempted murder after her baby was found alive in a plastic bag outside a New York home.
Harriette Hoyt, 17, was arrested and charged with second-degree attempted murder on Aug. 8 in Elmira, New York, reports WENY.
Neighbors found the infant, who is about 12 to 16 months old, inside a white plastic bag with her feet sticking out. Authorities say the child may have been there overnight, between 12 and 24 hours.
"My sister came out off the porch and went to the side to the backyard of my neighbor's house with a stick, thinking it was a dog," said one the residents who found the infant, Karen Seals.
"I was going to go poke it to see what it was," chimed in her sister, Kayla, who also rescued the child. "I dropped that stick, looked down. I dropped it so fast, I walked up and I seen my baby -- I'm calling it my baby -- the baby, a little girl. Her legs were just dangling in the bag, her head was in the bag, her whole head was covered all the way down. I tore it."
They immediately alerted authorities and cared for the child until first responders arrived.
"The Good Samaritans who found the child brought it inside, tried washing it up and immediately called 911," said Sgt. William Solt. "They rendered as much first aid as possible until emergency responders could arrive on scene."
The baby was quickly rushed to a local hospital. She is now in stable condition.
Solt continued, calling the girls who saved her "heroes."
"Obviously, it's very heroic on their part to render aid, immediately get inside, as you would expect any decent human being to do," he added.
"They are truly heroes in this incident," Solt later said.
The incident sparked debate on social media, with many arguing whether or not the mother was a victim or a villain.
"Where all the adults beside the 17 year old?" said one Daily Mail reader. "I am not siding on anyone here, but this girl clearly needed help. Gladly this baby is OK. Poor thing."
Others refused to defend the teenager.
"I get being 17 and having a kid cannot be the easiest thing to do," commented another reader. "But if you don't want your child anymore, there are a good number of ways to give it up without repercussions. Pick one. And ignorance is no excuse. I haven't met a teenager yet that doesn't have access to the Internet. And they are certainly resourceful enough to do a little research and figure it out. Or ask somebody, for God's sake. But don't hurt your child."