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Police may have break in deaths of three babies found in Mississippi River

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Ellsworth, 54011
Pierce County Herald
715-273-4335 customer support
Ellsworth Wisconsin 126 S. Chestnut St. 54011

Laboratory tests performed on three dead babies found the waters of the Mississippi River in Goodhue County (Minn.) have revealed "significant" DNA findings, authorities said Wednesday.

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Sheriff Dean Albers plans on making a public statement early next week about the information.

The results include data about the girl found this winter floating near Prairie Island marina and babies found in 1999 and 2003.

Albers said he must meet with officials from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension before releasing any specifics.

"We need to discuss what we have first and look it over," Albers said.

Goodhue County authorities spent more than $4,000 sending DNA samples three weeks ago to the high-tech lab in hopes of learning something about the infants or their parents.

Results from the lab were returned last Friday, Albers said.

Investigators continue to work all three cases, though leads regarding the most recent discovery have "slowed up considerably," the sheriff said.

A funeral and burial service will be held today (Thursday) for the infant girl whose body was found in March.

She has been named Abby by Jeanne and Don Madtson of Red Wing, Minn.

"Thursday will bring some closure to this," Jeanne Madtson said. "She has a right to be buried with dignity. Hopefully the mother is watching to see what the community has done for this baby."

Abby will be buried in Oakwood Cemetery along with the two other babies found in Goodhue County and the Madtson's daughter.

"The funeral takes an inhuman act and tries to humanize this poor baby," Albers said.

The Madtsons have spearheaded efforts to bury all three of the babies discovered in this area.

The couple donated the burial plot and Mahn Family Funeral Home has donated its services and a casket. The city of Red Wing is donating its services at the cemetery.

Plans for a headstone are still in the works.

Jeanne Madtson said monetary donations received from the public will be used for community education purposes.

"So hopefully this never happens again," she said.

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