Searching for parents of baby left in cab

Sketch released of suspect
March 1, 2008 7:06:37 AM PST
Lacking any substantiate leads, detectives on Friday reinterviewed the Ecuadorian immigrant who found a infant girl abandoned in the back of his livery car.Officials say 45-year-old Klever Sailema spoke to detectives, who tried to jog his memory about the mystery man who abandoned the girl.

The detectives tried to help Sailema better remember the suspect's accent. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said the driver "thought it might have been perhaps Dominican or Peruvian, which is pretty widespread."

Detectives received just one call from someone who claimed to know the infant, even though her face has been plastered on TV and newspapers. That call did not pan out, Kelly said.

The commissioner called the poor public response "both troubling and surprising" and said detectives "have no investigative theory that we are going forward on. We need some help."

Kelly said investigators do not doubt Sailema's account of what happened.

The livery driver said he picked up the mystery man, in his 20s, and the girl at 106th Street and Northern Boulevard at 9:20 Thursday morning.

Twenty blocks later, he told the driver to pull over so he could use a pay phone.

"He sad right directly behind him, he saw him very nervous, very concerned, very worried," said Sailema, through translator Fernando Mateo.

The passenger exited the cab and disappeared, leaving the 6- to 7-month-old infant behind. A small bag of baby food and clothes was also left in the cab beside the girl.

Sailema, who has an 8-year-old daughter, spoke with investigators and helped them create a sketch of the man who ran off.

The girl was released from the hospital and placed with a foster family with the city Administration for Children's Services.

"It's a beautiful baby," Kelly said. "The baby is in very good health so anyone with information please give us a call."