Grandfather of baby tossed in dumpster seeks custody, as mother defends daughter’s actions

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The horrific story of a New Mexico teen tossing her newborn baby into a dumpster in 36-degree weather with his umbilical cord still attached and driving off has a bit of good news as the infant is reportedly in stable condition after being discovered with no registering body temperature.

Another development in the story is the father of the 16-year-old boy who impregnated the teen wants custody of the baby boy, telling the Daily Mail they had no idea Alexis Avila, 18, was pregnant until she gave birth last week.

“Of course we’re trying to get custody. Of course. He is my grandson. That’s why we can’t comment on anything because we’re trying to get my grandson,” Oscar Astorga, 50, told the newspaper.

Shocking surveillance video captured the scene as Avila pulled up in a car in broad daylight outside of a New Mexico Rig Outfitters store and tossed a black plastic bag into the dumpster and then drove off. According to police, three people intent on scavenging in the dumpster heard the baby crying some six hours later. Still inside the trash bag, wrapped in a “dirty, wet towel” and covered in dried blood, the baby was removed from the dumpster and 911 notified.

Acting Hobbs Police Chief August Fons said at a news briefing Monday afternoon that the good Samaritans, Michael Green, Hector Jasso and April Nuttall, likely saved the baby’s life.

“Their collective quick response to this emergency, including notification of 911, was absolutely pivotal in saving this baby’s life,” Fons said.

Avila, who has been charged with attempted murder and a felony count of child abuse, told police she had no idea she was pregnant and only realized something was amiss after getting abdominal pains, the Daily mail reported. The teen said she panicked after giving birth in her parent’s bathroom — police said that while being interviewed Avila only referred to the child as “it.”

Her mother, Martha Avila, defended her daughter, telling the Daily Mail, “Everyone makes mistakes.”

“People can preach all they want, they can judge all they want, but we only care about the judgment of one,” the mother added.

Saying she had no idea her daughter was pregnant, Avila, 47, said the birth came as a shock to her and that the family would not have anything more to say — a lawyer for the family is expected to release a statement following a detention hearing on Wednesday afternoon.

According to a criminal complaint, Avila told police that she had banned her daughter’s ex-boyfriend — they reportedly broke up in August 2021 — from visiting their house because he allegedly “battered” her daughter in June.

The abandoned baby is now in the “lawful custody” of the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department and Astorga has hired a lawyer to help them get custody of the baby that they have named Saul.

Astorga, who runs a company servicing the local oil and gas industry, told that the news  that he was suddenly a grandfather was a huge shock — text messages from his son show he believed Avila had miscarried and had no idea he was to become a father until she was arrested for dumping the baby, according to the Daily Mail.

“When you don’t know and then all of a sudden someone calls you? It’s like wow,” Astroga said, before telling the tabloid that they have been getting death threats.

“I’d like to tell you a lot of things. I’m a God-fearing man. I just can’t comment right now,” Astorga added. “There’s a lot of people on social media that have been sending death threats to our family. We haven’t done anything wrong… we have nothing to hide but we can’t comment right now.”

Tom Tillison


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