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Woman arrested after police find dead newborn left in suitcase inside a dog house

Jessica Lynn Weeks | Bannock County Jail
EDITOR’S NOTE: This story contains extremely graphic and disturbing details regarding the death of a child. Reader discretion is advised.
DOWNEY – A 32-year-old woman is behind bars after deputies say they found her dead newborn in a suitcase, hidden in a dog house.
Jessica Lynn Weeks was charged with felony injury to a child, felony failure to notify of a death, and felony destruction, alteration, or concealment of evidence.
Deputies with the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office responded to a “suspicious circumstance” call near East Idaho Highway 40 near Downey on June 5.
The reporting party said she heard from her son, who is incarcerated, that there was a “deceased infant possibly going to be located in a piece of luggage near the dog house in the back of the residence.”
Officers spoke to the inmate, who said the baby’s mother was Weeks and she “didn’t want to go to the hospital to deliver the baby due to her drug use,” according to court documents.
He told deputies a second woman, a friend of Weeks’, was there when she gave birth, trying to help her. The man also said he spoke to a second inmate, who had allegedly witnessed the baby inside the suitcase.
When deputies spoke to the second inmate, he said he was at the house in January when he saw Weeks placing a purple suitcase in a doghouse.
He said he was cleaning up a few months later and came across the suitcase. After opening it, he observed “an infant’s leg that flopped onto his arm,” according to court documents.
He said the baby was wrapped in black plastic. He immediately left the area and “never went back.”
A search warrant was issued, and law enforcement arrived at the home, where they found Weeks and learned she had a warrant for her arrest out of Franklin County for possession of narcotics. She was then arrested and taken into custody.
At the home, officers noticed the “odor of decomposition” in the backyard, according to court documents. As they continued investigating, they found a “purple carry-on style suitcase” inside the dog house.
The entrance to the dog house was reportedly blocked with a tire and bags of trash, so deputies lifted the roof off and removed the suitcase from the inside.
Detectives unzipped the suitcase, and saw a “blueish baby blanket” and “numerous types of insects,” according to police reports.
When they removed the blanket, detectives saw the skeletal remains of a newborn infant along with decomposing tissue.
Detectives contacted the Bannock County Coroner and spoke with the alleged father of the baby.
When asked if he knew why officers were there, the father responded that he “read the search warrant” but said he knew nothing about Weeks being pregnant, delivering a baby in the house, or placing the baby in a suitcase in the dog house.
The next day, officers met with the friend who allegedly helped Weeks give birth.
According to the friend, Weeks called her on Jan. 27 “in a panic, telling her she was having a baby and needed help.”
Weeks told the friend her water had broken two days before, but she refused to go to the hospital or “have anyone respond to help,” according to the woman.
During the birth, Weeks reportedly “insisted on stopping and having a cigarette,” while the baby’s head was still stuck.
The woman says Weeks was “not really showing any interest in the (baby) after the head came out.”
Police reports say the woman was “very emotional in her describing attempting to clear (the baby’s) airway and provide rescue breaths.”
The friend said the baby’s father helped to provide rescue breaths, and the process went on for about an hour before she texted her husband that she believed the baby was dead.
When asked by deputies if she saw anything that would indicate that the baby was alive, the woman said she “felt what she wanted to believe was a pulse, but wasn’t sure,” according to court documents.
The friend says she put a diaper on the baby and placed her in a baby blanket in the suitcase “due to there being no other flat surface in the house to place the baby.”
According to deputies, they confirmed this when they conducted the search warrant. Deputies describe the home as having “an extreme amount of clutter everywhere.”
The friend told Weeks and the baby’s father that they needed to report the death to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare Vital Statistics Department and that she believed “funeral homes would provide free preparation for the infant’s burial arrangements.”
Days after visiting the property, deputies were able to get a swab of Weeks and the baby’s father’s mouths to confirm they were the baby’s parents. On July 5, the results concluded there was an extremely high statistical likelihood they were the parents.
The results also found that the infant tested positive for amphetamine and methamphetamine.
On Aug. 16, deputies received a report from the FBI that concluded the baby was between 36 and 40 weeks old and showed no signs of trauma, according to police reports.
The next day, deputies were able to look through Weeks’ phone and read messages sent days before the birth.
One text message states, “Idek wtf to do bro… and if they turn me in at the hospital, I’m f***** going to prison probably cuz I have warrants…”
Weeks was booked into the Bannock County Jail with a bond of $50,000.
The baby’s father and Weeks’ friend do not currently have any charges against them relating to this matter.
Weeks is expected to appear for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 5. If convicted, she could face up to 25 years in prison.
Though Weeks has been charged with these crimes, it does not necessarily mean she committed them. Everyone is presumed innocent until they are proven guilty.
The post Woman arrested after police find dead newborn left in suitcase inside a dog house appeared first on East Idaho News.

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