She Abandoned 'Baby Mary' in Woods Around Christmas, Then Became a Suburban Mom. Now, She'll Face Justice

Mary Crumlich, 57, pleaded guilty to manslaughter on Feb. 28

<p>Chris Pedota, / USA TODAY NETWORK</p> Baby Mary


Baby Mary's headstone

A woman who left her newborn daughter inside a plastic bag in a park in New Jersey 40 years ago was sentenced to 364 days in jail.

Mary Crumlich, 57, who lives in Columbia, S.C., pleaded guilty to manslaughter on Feb. 28. She was sentenced earlier this month.

She will serve her time at the Morris County Correctional Facility in New Jersey, the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement.

Crumlich was 17 at the time of her baby’s death.

She was linked to the case after authorities obtained a DNA profile of the infant, per Fox News.

The baby was discovered by two boys on Christmas Eve in 1984 in a wooded area in Mendham Township.

The girl’s body was found inside a plastic bag, wrapped in a towel. Her umbilical cord was still attached.

Authorities said the girl was alive at the time of birth.

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Because her identity was unknown when she was found, a reverend with St. Joseph’s Church baptized her and named her Mary.

“Over the last nearly four decades, investigators have vigorously pursued every lead to identify Baby Mary and learn more about the circumstances leading to her discovery in the woods,” the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement. “Using new technology, law enforcement networking in three states, and old-fashioned police work, investigators were recently able to identify Baby Mary’s biological father and mother.”

According to authorities, there was no evidence that the baby’s father, who is now deceased, was aware of the child’s birth and death.

Morris County Prosecutor Robert J. Carroll said the case was solved “through new forensic DNA technology, combined with traditional, boots-on-the-ground police work, carried out in multiple states,” per the release.

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