MILWAUKEE (AP) — A Milwaukee woman abducted a young pregnant mother and removed her fetus just days before the baby was due, killing both of them, authorities said. The suspect was arrested after she tried to pass the baby off as her own.

Milwaukee police said the 33-year-old woman removed the full-term baby from Maritza Ramirez-Cruz’ uterus “by force,” but did not elaborate.

The suspect called 911 on Thursday saying she had given birth at home and that the baby wasn’t breathing, police said. An autopsy and investigation led police back Friday to the suspect’s home, where they found the 23-year-old mother’s body in the basement. The woman was arrested but has not been charged.

Family members told WTMJ-TV that Ramirez-Cruz was due to give birth Oct. 16 to her fourth child, a boy, whom she and her husband had already named Omar.

Ramirez-Cruz’s husband, Christian Mercado, told the station that his wife had mild contractions Thursday morning and left the house around 9:15 a.m. to run an errand. Mercado went to work but asked her to call him if she wanted to go to the hospital.

Mercado said that around 11 a.m. he called his wife but got no answer. Family members searched for her and, more than a day after Mercado filed a police report, authorities called to say a body had been found that matched her description.

The case has been forwarded to the Milwaukee County district attorney’s office for review, police spokeswoman Anne E. Schwartz said.

Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said there was no evidence that the two women knew each other and he said “fetal abduction” is extremely rare.

Similar cases of women taking an unborn child from a mother’s womb were reported in Massachusetts and Oregon in 2009, in Pennsylvania in 2007, in Illinois in 2006 and Missouri in 2004.

In the Oregon case, a woman obsessed with having a baby pleaded guilty last year to the murder of a pregnant woman whose unborn child was cut from her abdomen after she was bludgeoned to death. Korena Roberts, 29, was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In Massachusetts, a Worcester woman, Julie Corey, pleaded not guilty to killing her pregnant friend, Darlene Hayes, and cutting the baby from Hayes’ womb. Corey and the baby were found in a homeless shelter in Plymouth, N.H., in July 2009, just days after Hayes was found dead with a fractured skull.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (12)
  1. just sayin says:

    SICK! SICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    1. Slim says:


  2. Tiny says:


    1. SOS says:

      Sorry sweetheart, it’s that same stupid request you’ve made that is partial reason for this BS! See sweetie, there ain’t no “God”, in any religion (besides, if there was, which religion out of 50+ is right?). So pull your head out of your keister, and start thinking and doing for yourself! Ain’t no “God” protecting you, or anybody else – such a dream…

      1. just sayin says:

        I think it was said better by John Cusack in the movie 1408.
        And even if they did, there’s no God to protect us from them, now is there?

        Or Brad Pitt in Fight Club: Listen to me! You have to consider the possibility that God does not like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen.

    2. tan pup says:

      Pray, pray, pray – sit on your knees with your head down and eyes closed; seems like we should be up on our feet, eyes wide open and using our minds to understand why this happened and make an effort that it never happens again. If you think i’m anti-prayer, I’m not, I’m just sick of people like you who say “pray” for this or that – like it’s your job to instruct everyone what to do! I bet you feel if you “pray hard enough”, GOD will bless you with that request I wonder if that poor inocent mother was praying for her unborn child before the other woman (who prayed for a baby) took their lives.

      1. markH says:

        Thanks for providing some common sense to ridiculous comment. I wish people would start thinking before they throw out that “prayer” business-it’s absurd and its insulting to those of us who know darn well that prayer is just another word for “chance.” Peace.

  3. Mr. Always Right says:


  4. worryfree says:

    What would be really scary is if this woman IS NOT insane…

  5. Frankie says:

    Talk about getting off the subject, jeez. This seriously sick and deranged individual has ruined a lot of people’s hopes and dreams, including her own family’s. Show some respect for the families who lost a daughter, grandaughter, cousin, aunt, friend…. Every time I read these ridiculous comments I realize more and more how “community” is no longer in our collective vocabulary.

    1. jackactionhero says:

      “Show some respect for the families who lost a daughter, grandaughter, cousin, aunt, friend”

      They live in Milwaukee. How exactly do you propose that be accomplished? You think they’re finding their way to another state’s online news story about it? Give me a break.

  6. jackactionhero says:

    4th baby by age 23, eh? Sounds about right.

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