(Bartlett, TN) The body of a newborn baby was found near a dumpster behind a business at about 8:30 Saturday morning.
Two guests staying at a nearby hotel were on a morning jog when they found the infant in the middle of the alleyway, near Germantown Road and Highway 64
Business owner Debbie Ellis still can't grasp what happened.
"All of us are neighbors and we watch out for one another, and we know what goes on back here. At least, we thought," she said.
People in the area say they feed stray cats, which help keep rodents away from nearby restaurants, and it was the cats that pulled the baby out of the dumpster, in plain view of the joggers.
Police were able to locate the child's mother, who one nearby business owner said is an employee at one of the stores.
She was pregnant, and there are rumors blood was found in the store bathroom after her shift. Police would not confirm this.
"I can't put that together in my mind," business owner Robert Fisher said. "I have three kids. I just can't put it together, it's a tragedy. It's awful."
People who spoke with News Channel 3 said they understand a new mother's fears about pregnancy, but say there had to be another way.
A hospital is just two blocks away, and people who would have helped, no questions asked, even closed.
"I would have took that baby, a lot of people would have took that baby," business owner Renee Miller said.
The cause of death has not yet been determined by the medical examiner's office.
There are no suspects in custody and no criminal charges have been filed.