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Newborn found dead in log boom

RCMP appeal to mother of baby found in Fraser River to come forward

Police are trying to trace a mother after a newborn baby was found floating in the north arm of the Fraser River on Tuesday night.

The body of a newborn baby boy was discovered floating in the Fraser River between Richmond and Burnaby by a tugboat crew.

"Our tug was delivering a small tow just upriver of the railroad bridge," said Harken Towing manager John Bowles.

"When they arrived there, they found the body floating in one of the booms that was already being stored there."

The tug crew called in officials, and called it a night.

"They're pretty traumatized," said Bowles. "They did what they're supposed to do - they notified the RCMP, and the Coast Guard.

"They went home early on the night shift."

When the tugboat crew first noticed the newborn's body around 10 p.m. on Tuesday, they believed it to be a doll.

On Wednesday afternoon, police boats were scouring the area along the shoreline and near the log booms.

In addition, police parked along the shore on the Richmond side of the north arm of the Fraser River were aiding in the investigation, along with the Air One police helicopter.

RCMP say the baby was found by witnesses in the area who, at first glance, believed the infant to be a doll.

Police attended and confirmed the infant was deceased. The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) was then called in and has taken over the investigation.

While the baby appears to be newborn, police are waiting on results of an autopsy to confirm when the child was born, as well as the race of the baby.

"IHIT are concentrating on finding the mother of the baby and ensuring that her health and well being have been looked after," said IHIT's Sgt. Jennifer Pound.

"She may require medical attention and we are asking she contact investigators at 1 877 551 IHIT(4448)."

IHIT are asking for any witnesses who may know anything to call the IHIT tipline at 1 877 551 IHIT(4448). Or, if you wish to remain anonymous, call Crimestoppers at 1 800 222 (TIPS) 8477.

- with files from Alfie Lau, Postmedia News