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Child born on San Francisco street, then abandoned, but saved, police say

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A woman apparently gave birth on a San Francisco street overnight, leaving her child behind as police arrived to help her.

San Francisco police said they were called to a Bayview District street corner at 2 a.m.  to do a welfare check on a woman who had arrived at the door of a homeless shelter and said she needed help. They said she was bleeding and told them she had just given birth.

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When officers arrived they said they were flagged down by a man who was holding a newborn baby boy.  He said the mother handed him the baby before she took off.

Initially the baby was unresponsive. One of the officers on the scene was a former paramedic and began CPR. The officers called for an ambulance but decided they could get the baby to the hospital faster, so they drove the infant in their police cruiser to San Francisco General Hospital. 

Meanwhile, other officers searched and found the new mother nearby. She was also rushed to the hospital, according to police.

Both the baby and the mother are now at SF General and expected to survive.

The circumstances surrounding the birth were not immediately clear.

The officers who rushed the baby to the hospital are being called heroes.  They both have been on the force for five years and work the midnight shift by choice, according to Lt. Robert O'Sullivan of the SFPD.

O'Sullivan said the two don't want to talk about what they did because they are upset thinking about their own children.

"If they are not heroes, I don't know who is," O'Sullivan added.

The case remains under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call police Sgt. John Keane of the Police Department's special victims unit at (415) 553-9363.

Bay City News contributed to this report.