Christiansburg mother charged in dead baby in closet case - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Christiansburg mother charged in dead baby in closet case

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A Christiansburg woman faces charges after police found a dead baby in the closet of a home.

On Friday afternoon, Christiansburg Police said officers had charged 23-year-old Melinda Sue Woolwine under Virginia's code for 'transport, secrete, conceal, or alter a dead body to prevent detection of the death or manner or cause of death.'  The charge is a class 6 felony, and punishable by between one-to-five years in prison, and/or a $2,500 fine.

Investigators believe Woolwine gave birth to a nearly full-term child about two-to-three weeks before it was found September 28th, in a home in the 100 block of East Street.

The Medical Examiner's Office could not determine if the child was stillborn or alive at birth, due to how badly the child's body had decomposed.

"In coordination with the Christiansburg Police Department, I feel confident this is the appropriate charge to place against Ms. Woolwine at this time as we have no evidence that the fetus was born alive," said Montgomery County Commonwealth's Attorney Mary Pettitt, in a news release.

After her arrest, officers released Woolwine on an unsecured bond.  Woolwine was ordered to continue treatment through Access services, and to remain within the Commonwealth pending trial.

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