Old Time Crime: Woman convicted of dumping newborn son in outhouse is still missing after 20 years

Woman dumps newborn son in outhouse in 1996
Posted at 7:48 AM, Apr 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-02 10:48:19-04

Rescuers save a newborn baby from a Canyon Lake outhouse in 1996.

It was April 4, 1996, when a young boy heard the cries of a newborn infant coming from an outhouse at a camping spot at Canyon Lake, northeast of Phoenix. 

He found the baby in a tied plastic bag

The boy alerted Bourke Langley, a campground worker who then also heard the cries and contacted the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office. With a deputy holding a flashlight, Langley went down into the septic tank. He found the baby in a tied plastic bag.

The baby was cold, oxygen deprived and bleeding, but still alive. Deputy Doug Doyle borrowed a shoelace from a young camper and used it to tie off the umbilical cord and stop the bleeding. 

The baby was airlifted to a Valley hospital and eventually given to other family members.

It was learned that the child's mother Carmelita Aguirre, who was 23-years-old at the time, gave birth in the restroom of the Laguna Campground at Canyon Lake. She left the baby to die as she placed him in a plastic bag and dumped him about 6-8 feet down in the septic tank. 

She didn't want her husband to know

She was also taken to the hospital and told Deputy Doyle that she abandoned the child because she didn't want her husband to know about it.

Aguirre, who is from Douglas Arizona, was charged with child abuse and attempted first-degree murder.

She was initially given a $236,000 bond, however, that bond was later reduced to $2,385 as her defense attorneys were able to convince the judge, that despite her being an illegal immigrant and facing a potential sentence of 46 years, she would be present at all her court appearances. 

Aguirre hasn't been heard from since

Those assurances proved to be unfounded as Aguirre skipped out just before the jury rendered its guilty verdict in February 1997. Aguirre hasn't been heard from since. The baby was given to his father in Douglas, but a few months later the court ordered the father give the baby to his parents fearing that the father would return the child to his mother.