"Baby Hope" Update: 1991 cold case victim identified, report says

Sketch of what "Baby Hope" might have looked like given by the NYPD in an attempt to find someone that might recognize her.
CBS New York
Sketches provided by the NYPD that show what "Baby Hope" might have looked like and the cooler in which the child was found in 1991.
CBS New York

(CBS) NEW YORK - A child who came to be known as "Baby Hope" after her decomposing body was found in a cooler along a New York City highway 22 years ago and whose parents or relatives never reported her missing has finally been identified, the New York Post reports.

The real name of "Baby Hope" is Angelica Ramirez, a law-enforcement source reportedly told the paper.

The case has resurfaced in recent days after authorities announced they identified the mother of the child.

The discovery was made after police launched a renewed effort this past July to obtain solid information in order to identify the child, who was malnourished and whose body showed possible signs of sexual abuse when she was found in 1991.

Police handed out posters and flyers featuring a composite sketch of what the child - estimated to be 3 to 5 years old -- might have looked like and offered a $12,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

"Baby Hope" breakthrough: NYPD identify mother
New York City detectives working the case were the ones that actually named the child Baby Hope and pitched in with their own money to buy the girl a headstone and cemetery plot.

As a result, a tip came in from a woman who said she thought she knew Baby Hope's sister and that bit of information reportedly led detectives to the mother of the unidentified child. Law enforcement officials were able to match the child's DNA last week, reports CBS New York.

"A DNA match was made with the mother and the mother has been cooperating," New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said.

The mother, who has not been publicly identified, told detectives an abusive ex-husband had run off with her daughters - Baby Hope and an older girl - in 1990.

Detectives are now trying to locate the father, who may be in Mexico, according to the New York Post.

Police are still encouraging anyone with information about the case to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visit or text tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

Complete coverage of "Baby Hope" on Crimesider