Body Found Might Be Baby Zara
The body of an infant discovered this morning is consistent with the descriptions of a three-month-old alledgedly abducted by her father and thrown over a bridge in February, police say.
The remains were discovered around 8:30 a.m. by people walking on the southern bank of the Raritan River in Sayerville, according to New Jersey State Police.
Authorities have recovered evidence from the scene, including DNA samples that will be processed at the New Jersey State Police lab as soon as possible.
Three-month-old Zara Malani-Lin Abdur-Raheem has been missing since she was alledgedly abducted by her biological father, Shamsid-Din Abdur-Raheem on Feb. 16. Baby Zara was wearing a pink-and-gray Carter's onesie, and wrapped in a blue sleeping bag.
The clothing and wrappings found on the body are consistent with these descriptions, say police.
Zara's mother, Venetta Benjamin, has been notified of the discovery, but the found infant is considered unidentified until DNA testing or other means can prove her identity. Benjamin had filed for a restraining order against Abdur-Raheem shortly before the abduction.
An autopsy will be performed on the body at the state medical examiner's regional office in Newark.
The remains were located just east of the Route 35 bridge, known as the Victory Bridge.
On Feb. 16, Abdur-Raheem, 21, of Galloway Township, alledgedly forced his way into the baby's grandmother's East Orange apartment, took baby Zara and then hit the grandmother with his car as he drove away, according to police.