The 9-month-old girl who was found in a hospital drain in Southeast on Tuesday has been discharged, according to a statement released by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.
Cari Katherine Santoliquitos Sanchez-Martinez was just one hour away from a full recovery when she was rushed into surgery when she began having health problems. Once in surgery, she had to be put on a ventilator so her airway could be completely blocked. The surgery took five hours.
“The girl was in great pain when she arrived,” Dr. Lydia Tan said at a press conference on Wednesday, citing a fellow physician. “There were tears.”
According to a report from HCR.com, the child’s father had found a fishing line in the drain. He opened the grate where the child was found and found the infant lying face down on the floor of the drain, with water running down her face and holding her airway shut. She remained in that position for about three hours until someone called 911.
The baby’s father, his wife and a doctor who lives at the home where the baby was found were arrested in connection with the case on Tuesday. A probable cause affidavit, filed at the DC Superior Court and obtained by CNN, said she had a fractured skull and fractured ribs.
After the arrest of her parents, authorities were able to identify the child as the girl who was found inside the hospital drain, according to a statement released by the hospital.
As the baby’s parents were being taken away in handcuffs, a prosecutor said at the press conference that charges against the parents could be changed.
“If these defendants do so, it will not end here,” said deputy district attorney Amisha Virmani. “We will charge them.”
She later clarified to CNN that no charges had been filed on Wednesday. “There is no indictment at this time,” Virmani said.
As the investigation continued, DC Public Schools announced that new school uniforms would be made available to all students. All CPS parents were notified of the school uniform policy by mail, according to the statement. The CPS protocol requires new uniforms to be provided to parents before school begins. CPS has provided 1,500 uniforms to students so far.
“This is such a tragedy for the child,” CPS CEO Dr. Mark Preston said in a statement. “The school system cares deeply about the welfare of all students, and we are doing everything we can to assist the families in this extremely difficult time.”