An infant missing since her mother was discovered stabbed to death earlier this week was found safe in a Houston apartment.
Authorities in Texas said 6-week-old Shamali Flores appeared “to be unharmed” when they found her Thursday, but that she was taken to “an area hospital as a precaution.”
Shamali had been missing since Tuesday, when a family member found her mother, Carolina Flores, dead in a Houston apartment from multiple stab wounds. At the time, the baby girl was nowhere to be found, police said.
Officials did not release any details on how they found the infant.
A $5,000 reward was being offered for information on Flores’ murder and Shamali’s whereabouts. Houston Police chief Art Acevedo said during a press conference Wednesday the suspect likely knew of the family and the area.
“We really believe based on what we’ve seen so far that this suspect who has this child is familiar with this family and familiar with this neighborhood,” he said. “The individual who abducted Shamali may be a woman who has or will present the child as their own, and may even indicate the child was recently born.”
He continued on to encourage those in the community to think of everyone who may have lost a child recently or people who have a newborn despite never announcing a pregnancy: “That might be someone we may be interested in talking to.”
Acevedo also acknowledged a “mistrust” from the immigrant community toward police and emphasized tips can be submitted anonymously.
“We want to make sure that people understand that our one focus … our only goal is to bring justice to this family and that baby back to where she belongs,” he said. “We’re not interested in anybody’s immigration status.”
Officials initially thought Shamali was with her father, Marcos Mariano Palacios. He’d also been operating under the alias Thomas Bernardez, KHOU reported.
Authorities found him in San Antonio Tuesday night and he has been cooperating with the investigation. The father denied involvement in the crime and has since been released.
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Source: New York Daily News
Featured Image: AP Photo/File
Inset Image: Getty Images