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Chinese baby, rescued from toilet, is released to grandparents

By Ashley Fantz and Ed Payne, CNN
updated 9:37 AM EDT, Thu May 30, 2013
The tiny face of a newborn baby boy is revealed as rescuers cut apart a sewage pipe at a hospital in Jinhua, China, on Saturday, May 25. The tiny face of a newborn baby boy is revealed as rescuers cut apart a sewage pipe at a hospital in Jinhua, China, on Saturday, May 25.
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Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
Baby rescued from toilet pipe in China
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A baby boy is rescued from a toilet pipe in eastern China
  • Police believe it was an accident how baby got into toilet
  • The baby is released to his maternal grandparents
  • A police officer says mother was embarrassed to be single and give birth

(CNN) -- A newborn baby boy who was found alive inside a toilet pipe in Jinhua, China, has been released from a hospital and taken home by his maternal grandparents, police said.

The child's mother is still being treated at the hospital, but has been cooperating with the investigation, Xiang Jiangsong, a police official, said Thursday.

The police are labeling the case an "accident" at this time, and no charges have been filed against the mother.

Dramatic video of the infant's rescue made global headlines and sparked reactions worldwide.

Mom says baby in toilet was an accident
Baby rescued from toilet pipe
Saving a newborn trapped in sewer pipe
Fighting for childbirth rights in China

Unable to pull the infant out, rescuers went to a floor below the toilet and sawed away a section of pipe to gain access from there.

Still unable to extract the infant, rescuers detached the section of pipe with the infant inside and took it to the hospital.

Working together, rescuers and doctors used pliers and gingerly tore away bits of the pipe.

CCTV video showed the exact moment hands in white gloves gingerly pulled away a part of the pipe to reveal the newborn's face.

The infant, a boy referred to as "Baby 59," was drinking formula, doctors said.

Police said firefighters and other rescuers involved visited the baby at the hospital and sent clothes, formula powder and diapers.

The mother's account

The mother of the infant is not being identified, but local police say she is 22.

Police say that, so far, they believe her account of how the baby ended up in the pipe.

"That day she felt stomachaches," said Jiang Song, the vice director of police. "So she went to the toilet. It was actually close to her due date and the baby just slid out."

Police questioned the woman, who told them that she did not intend for the child to fall into the toilet, according to a local TV channel that was posted on the official police Weibo account.

The police said she tried to retrieve the baby with a stick, then decided to flush the toilet to clear away the blood.

Police: Young mother was embarrassed

A police officer in Pujiang County, in which the incident took place, told a journalist working for CNN that the unmarried woman broke up with her boyfriend six months ago. The officer refused to give his full name to the reporter, identifying himself only as Fang.

According to Fang, the young woman was embarrassed to have a child as a single woman and felt nervous, so after the baby fell in the toilet, she called her landlord and told him that she'd heard crying, Fang said.

The landlord saw the baby and called police, the officer said, adding that the woman later begged police not to tell her story to anyone, including her parents, because she didn't want public attention, according to the officer.

The mother's parents have agreed to help the mother take care of the baby, and police have identified a man they believe is the father. The police are conducting blood tests to confirm paternity, the officer told CNN.

Fang said that the mother has legal custody of the child and can decide if she wants help from the baby's father.

CNN's Dayu Zhang and journalist Lilian Wu contributed to this report

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