A woman found her infant daughter missing from her crib. The family and neighbors launched a search for the child. The seven-month-old was eventually found injured and unconscious. Police have launched an investigation into the incident. A man who did business with the child’s father is being considered a suspect.

On Tuesday, July 20 night, the incident took place in Macherla Mandal, Guntur District of the South Indian state Andhra Pradesh. At around 2:00 a.m. local time, the infant’s mother woke up to check on her child. She peeked into the infant’s crib to find her missing. The devastated mother woke up the rest of the family.

The family started searching for the child as soon as she was noticed missing. Soon, other residents of the Bodanampadu village joined the search for the missing infant.

The search continued for three hours till the baby was eventually found. Macherla Rural circle inspector Bhaktavatchala Reddy told Times of India that the villagers found the child by the side of the road. She was hidden in the bushes beside the road, just around 110 yards from her home. The parents were informed as soon as the unconscious infant was found.

Taking the child to a nearby hospital, the parents informed the police as well. The police launched an investigation into the abduction. Doctors at the hospital noted that the baby had injuries to her face, lips and genitals. While sexual assault is being speculated, samples have been sent for tests to confirm if the child had been raped. The child’s condition continues to improve at Guntur Government General Hospital where she had been transferred from the local hospital.

As the reports are being awaited, police are continuing their investigation. The child’s parents informed the police that four people had visited their home on Monday, July 19, the New Indian Express reported. Investigating officers will be questioning the individuals who had visited the home the day of the incident.

According to News Meter, the police suspect the father’s business associate. The girl’s father and the suspect worked together to sell illegal alcohol. The two men had a falling out recently. The former business partner could have targeted the child as an act of revenge. Police are trying to nab the suspect for questioning.

Investigation continues.

baby-2617086_960_720 Representation image. pixabay