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Two newborn girls surrendered to L.A. County hospitals

July 11, 2012 | 12:27 pm

: L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe holds a "Safe Surrender" signTwo newborn girls were safely relinquished to hospitals in Los Angeles County in separate incidents earlier this week and will be put up for adoption, authorities announced Wednesday.

The babies were surrendered within hours of each other Monday, one in Lancaster and the other in Pomona. They are in protective custody and will be placed with families approved for adoption, officials said. They were the third and fourth newborns to be relinquished in Los Angeles County this year under "Safe Surrender" rules, officials said.

State law allows women to hand over newborns, within 72 hours of birth, to hospitals or fire stations without danger of being prosecuted, as long as the child has not been abused or neglected. In Los Angeles County, people can call 1-877-BABY-SAFE to find the nearest “Safe Surrender” site.

Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe, who helped establish the hotline program, said he was pleased that the babies are safe.

“I’m thankful that these mothers decided to surrender their babies, rather than put them in a harmful situation. As word spreads about the program, mothers in desperate situations can make the right choice for her baby, because of Safe Surrender,” Knabe said in a statement.

His staff said they did not know the details of the babies' births or why their mothers decided not to keep them.


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Photo: L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe holds a "Safe Surrender" sign. Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times