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St. Francis Medical Center shares infant security measures after baby was taken from hospital

Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 7:38 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2020 at 8:32 AM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - A man is in custody after taking a baby from St. Francis Medical Center. Hospital officials are sharing their practices in place to prevent future incidents like this.

Police said 35-year-old Travis Hargrove left the hospital on Friday, Oct. 22 with the baby hidden in a black backpack. The baby was found safe a few hours later.

KNOE reported on a similar incident in April of 2016. Police say 24-year-old Anquinisha Cummings took a three-day-old baby from its mother’s room. Cummings later turned herself in.

The Safe Place system was implemented shortly after that incident as a safeguard for infant protection.

The hospital has multiple measures in place for infant safety. Visitors are required to have a photo ID at arrival when check-in. The “Safe Place” infant security system is in place to ensure newborns are in a safe and secure environment.

“We have sensors in place throughout the organization that track the baby as it moves from one place to the next. It sends alerts off, we have panels at the nurses' station as well as the security department that trigger alerts to the staff," said Christa Lewis the Senior Director for Women and Children’s Services.

Staff members also put security bracelets on the babies until they’re discharged.

According to arrest records, an alarm sounded notifying the hospital staff that the security bracelet had been removed. Records state that the bracelet was found in the trashcan.

The incident is under investigation.

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