The death of a baby whose body was found in a garbage bag in 2009 has finally been solved.
The heartbreaking discovery was made in the Village of Theresa, Wisconsin, 13 years ago, with authorities saying that the full-term baby girl appeared to have been healthy.
But investigators were unable to identify whose baby she was or any family members, naming her "Baby Theresa" after where she was found, with the tot buried in May 2009 with members of the Dodge County community attending, but without any family present.
An autopsy determined that there was no indication that the child had been killed, but rather she was the victim of "fetal demise," suggesting she had died prior to or during birth.
The sheriff's office says that it continued to investigate throughout the years, and eventually "advances in forensic science allowed us to identify a suspect in this incident."
The girl's mother, Karin Luttinen, of Milwaukee, was identified in 2021,
Police say they worked with the Dodge County District Attorney’s Office "to identify the correct charge in this incident," which ultimately led to Luttinen of being charged with concealing the death of a child, which carries a sentence of up to 3 years and 6 months in prison.
Luttinen made her first court appearance this week.
"This incident shocked our Dodge County community when it occurred, but as shocking as it may be, the professionals of the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office, the Dodge County District Attorney’s Office and the Dodge County Medical Examiner's Office, along with our community, came together from the initial discovery of Baby Theresa’s body until today," said Sheriff Dale Schmidt.
"I would like to thank all of those who worked diligently in this incident over the past 13 years."
"While this certainly has been a shocking discovery for us all, especially to the family of Baby Theresa, closure can now begin for all those touched," he added.