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'Baby Hope' cold case reopened

7:22 AM, Jul 24, 2013   |    comments
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By John Slattery

NEW YORK (WCBS/CNN) - Police in New York are renewing an effort to solve a 22-year-old cold case.

In 1991 a child's body was found inside of a cooler. The little girl became known as "Baby Hope."

Between the public address announcements and police passing out handbills, you'd think it happened yesterday.

Irma Graven is one of many Inwood residents who recall the disturbing discovery of the child. Max Madera is another.

"They said they found a little girl in a cooler. I said wow," said Madera.

It was July 23, 1991 when the body of a girl, 3 to 5-years-old, was discovered in woods near the Henry Hudson Parkway and Dychman Street in Inwood. Now, 22 years have passed.

"It doesn't matter how many years it was. We want to close the case and find out who this little girl was," said Robert Dewhurst with the New York Police Department.

The child, whose image has been enhanced to what she might have looked like at the time, was white or white-Hispanic. Inwood resident Mike William remembers the case.

"I don't think they ever ID'd the little girl, and never been able to find out why it happened," said William.

The body was extremely malnourished and weighed only about 25 pounds. People here support the police effort to solve the case.

"It's a good thing. Worth the effort. Always worth pursuing. Always worth pursuing," said area resident Steve Lastella.

After more than two decades, police are hoping that renewed attention on this cold case anniversary will result in some hot leads.

WCBS/CNN

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