Woman accused of abandoning baby on person’s doorstep

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — A Florida woman is facing charges after the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said she left her 3-month-old baby on a person’s doorstep Sunday night.

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Deputies said Melissa Kelley, 33, rang the doorbell of the home of Patricia Tillman several times. When Tillman answered the door, deputies said Kelley left her baby boy at the other woman’s feet, telling her that she could not take care of the baby any longer and that the baby’s father would be taking the child, WFTV reported.

The incident was recorded on Tillman’s doorbell camera.

Kelley also allegedly told Tillman not to touch the baby since he had scabies. Kelley then left. Tillman told the authorities that the baby had a dirty diaper, half a can of formula, an empty baby bottle and dirty baby towels, WFTV reported.

Tillman did not know Kelley, who was identified hours after the incident. Tillman found out that the baby’s father was her daughter’s boyfriend, Clayton Zinck.

Attempts were made to find Zinck and eventually, family members got in touch with his parents who refused to get the baby or wake the father up, WFTV reported.

Deputies told WFTV Kelley sent text messages that read, “Please don’t make me throw this baby in the trash,” and that she was going to kill herself since Zinck didn’t want a relationship.

Kelley was found in a wooded area and taken to jail. She is charged with unlawful desertion of a child and neglect of a child.

The baby was taken to an area hospital by the Florida Department of Children and Families for treatment of potential scabies infection, WFTV reported.