Abandoned Worcester baby: Police struggle to determine Joseph's ethnicity

Bag The bag is believed to be from South Africa

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The ethnicity of a baby found abandoned on a doorstep in Worcester has still not been determined by police.

Named by nursing staff who looked after him, Joseph was found wrapped in an orange hessian bag in the Lower Wick area early on Thursday.

He is now in the care of social services but West Mercia Police have been unable to trace his mother.

Det Ch Insp Stacey Williamson said finding out Joseph's ethnicity was key to their investigation.

"Tests have been carried out but the (Worcestershire Royal) hospital does not have the experts to figure it out," she said.

"It is more than likely that we will need to go through a forensic route.

"We've been to the College of Policing as well as other police forces for guidance and advice on dealing with this issue."

Det Insp Neil Austin said blood samples and swabs had been taken from Joseph for DNA testing but police were seeking advice on what kind of further tests to carry out on him.

He added they were hoping forensic tests on the blanket Joseph was found in might help determine a DNA profile of his mother.

'No direct link'

The bag Joseph was found in is believed to be from South Africa and has the words "Woolworth's - The Difference, A Community Based Project" written on it.

Officers have appealed to anyone who may have a connection with South Africa and was due to give birth to come forward.

They have also been in contact with local schools and health services as well as families known to the childminder who found the baby on her doorstep.

Adrienne Hunt has worked with children since 2003 and said whoever left the baby with her must have known what she did for a living.

Ms Williams said very few people had been in touch to offer information and a 24-hour phone line was set up by the hospital in the hope that the mother will make contact.

She said officers would continue house to house enquiries on Monday.

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