The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office said at a press conference Friday afternoon that they have arrested the mother of an infant who was found abandoned in woods in the county in 2019.
Karima Jiwani, 40, of Cumming, was charged with criminal attempt to commit murder, first-degree cruelty to children, aggravated assault and reckless abandonment.
The case, known as the "Baby India" case, involved a newborn who was found inside a plastic bag on June 16, 2019, in a wooded area on Daves Creek Road.
Sheriff Ron Freeman said the arrest was made thanks to leads provided by DNA in the case. Specifically, investigators were first able to identify the father of the newborn.
"That began an even more concerted investigation, with a focus to determine the manner, cause, and who was responsible for leaving Baby India to die in an isolated area of woods," Freeman said.
Freeman said the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office Major Crimes Unit utilized the DNA again within the week leading up to the arrest to identify Jiwani as Baby India's mother.
"How a parent, and I happen to be one too, can do such a callous thing is both incomprehensible to all of us and it's infuriating," Freeman said. "I'm dumbfounded by any reasoning that could be there. And how someone can have the ability to leave their own child to die."
Evidence indicates Baby India was born in a vehicle, which Freeman said they are working to locate. Additionally, he said evidence indicates Jiwani drove the vehicle for a significant amount of time with the infant inside and did not make an effort to leave the child at any safe place.
"Evidence also reveals a history of hidden and concealed pregnancies and surprise births in Ms. Jiwani's history," Freeman said. "Additional evidence indicates that she had known of this particular pregnancy for a period of time ... and went to extremes to conceal this pregnancy."
The father was reportedly unaware of the pregnancy or the abandonment of Baby India, according to Freeman.
Freeman said parents of a newborn have options should they find themselves in a situation where they do not want to keep their child.
"Georgia has a safe harbor law," Freeman said. "You can leave a child at a hospital, a police station, a fire station, the sheriff's office and you can't get charged. In this case Ms. Jiwani made no effort to leave this child, not only under the Safe Harbor law, but in any place this child can be found. This child was tied up in a plastic bag and thrown into the woods like a bag of trash."
Freeman said Baby India has recovered in the years since her discovery and is now "happy and healthy."
Original story published Friday at 8:20 p.m.:
Forsyth County officials announced Thursday they have made an arrest in the 2019 "Baby India" case, in which an infant was found abandoned in woods in the county.
According to a press release from the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office, a press conference will be held at 2 p.m. Friday to release the details of Thursday morning's arrest. AccessWDUN will be in attendance and will provide updates from the briefing.
The agency said the arrest ties back to June 16, 2019, at about 10 p.m., when deputies responded to the 1900 block of Daves Creek Road in reference to a crying baby. Arriving deputies found the female infant abandoned in the wooded area along the road. The girl was found inside a plastic bag.
"For the past almost 4-years, the Forsyth County Major Crimes Unit have been tirelessly working this case," the press release reads.
No other details were released.
This story will be updated with more details following Friday's press conference.