Myrtle Beach woman indicted on attempted murder charge after newborn found in trash

Shelby Harper Taylor
Shelby Harper Taylor

A Myrtle Beach woman was indicted on an attempted murder charge in connection with her newborn baby being found abandoned in a trash bin in April outside an apartment complex, according to court records.

Shelby Harper Taylor, 23, was indicted on the charge in Horry County Grand Jury indictments released Tuesday.

Taylor was arrested on the charge April 11 after Horry County police said they were searching for a woman in connection with a newborn baby girl being found abandoned in a dumpster.

The baby was found hours after it was born inside a dumpster about 2:30 p.m. April 9 in the 500 block of Fairway Village Drive, authorities said. Two brothers taking trash to the bin found the baby after hearing her cries.

Soon after the baby was found, Horry County police released surveillance photos of a woman, who was Taylor, that they were searching for in connection with the case.

Horry County police Lt. Raul Denis said Taylor surrendered to police that night after she recognized pictures of herself being circulated by the media.

She was taken to a local hospital for treatment and then booked into J. Reuben Long Detention Center on the charge. She was released a few hours later on $10,000 bail.

Austin Detray, 19, found the baby girl in his neighborhood dumpster.

“After a few cries I knew it was a baby,” he said at the time. “I got into the dumpster and starting looking around, moving bags, and that’s when I saw her.”

The baby’s face was pressed against a garbage bag and covered in blood, mucus and trash, Detray said. He told his brother to get help and carried the baby – umbilical cord still attached – to safety.

“It’s extremely fortunate she was found. The baby was literally in trash bags in a dumpster. It’s a miracle she was able to breathe long enough to be found,” said Denis at the time. “It was a blessing the kids were throwing away trash and cared enough to rescue her.”

Some people called Detray a hero for saving the newborn girl, but Detray said he just wanted to do the right thing.

“It feels good to know I did what I did, because it was the right thing to do,” he said then. “I don’t want to be called a hero because I didn’t want this to happen in the first place.”

The baby was placed with the S.C. Department of Social Services at that time, and DSS will continues to assess the safety and well-being of the child and the family and provide services as necessary, according to Marilyn M. Matheus, manager of public information.

In South Carolina, Daniel’s Law allows someone to turn in an newborn baby less than 30 days old to a police or fire station or hospital without prosecution or questions, Denis said.

This is the first case of an abandoned newborn in Horry County since Baby Boy Horry was found dead in a bag by utility workers on Dec. 4, 2008, along S.C. 544, Denis said. That case was the first of its kind in the area, and it remains under investigation.

Contact TONYA ROOT at 444-1723 or on Twitter @tonyaroot.

Related stories from Myrtle Beach Sun News