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Police ‘no further ahead’ in death probe after baby found in canal a year ago

Floral tributes left near Rough Wood country park in Walsall, where a dead newborn boy was found in the local canal (PA)
Floral tributes left near Rough Wood country park in Walsall, where a dead newborn boy was found in the local canal (PA)

Detectives have said they are “still no further ahead” in their investigation into the death of a newborn whose body was found in a canal one year ago.

West Midlands Police said the baby boy was discovered by a passer-by in Rough Hay Country Park, near Willenhall, Walsall, at around 1pm on May 20 last year.

The force said the infant was likely to have been in the water for “several days” but a post-mortem examination was inconclusive.

Baby boy found dead in canal
The baby boy was found in a canal in Walsall in May last year (Richard Vernalls/PA)

Despite “extensive work around familial DNA” and other forensic opportunities, officers are still yet to identify the boy’s parents.

Police said they are “still no further ahead in understanding what happened to him.”

A card and flowers were left at the scene in February but forensic analysis of the card found nothing.

The force are still appealing for any witnesses, or anyone with information to come forward.

Detective Inspector Michelle Thurgood, from the homicide team, who is now leading the investigation, said: “This case is really very sad.

“We’ve worked tirelessly to try and find out what happened to this little boy, it’s disappointing we’ve been unable get answers for him to date.

“We’ll always act upon any new information provided to us and have today distributed a further witness appeal in the local area.

“My thoughts are with all concerned and the wider community who I know were deeply distressed by this sad discovery.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has provided us with information so far and assure them that all lines of inquiry have been acted on.”

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