Update: 11:45am Wednesday
Police say the preliminary results from the autopsy show cause of death as an overdose of prescription medication.
They’re trying to solve a horrible mystery in Rolla, Missouri, where a new mother, just three days removed from giving birth, was found dead in a hospitality room at the Phelps County Medical Center.
Stephanie Maylee’s Facebook page was a journal celebrating her pregnancy with the baby, who a friend says she named Blake. A copy of the ultrasound with a teddy bear on the corner was her profile page.
Her postings say the child was due on February 28th, but hospital officials say she gave birth on Friday the 10th. She stayed for a somewhat customary 48 hours and was discharged, but the child remained, presumably for observation and care.
Hospital officials say Maylee returned on Sunday night and was allowed to stay in a hospitality room. The rooms are similar to motel rooms and are provided to parents of babies who are hospitalized. The next morning she was found dead. Asked if there were any “red flags” regarding Maylee’s health, the medical center’s general manager said, "no."
"There is nothing in terms of our internal review yet that has indicated there was anything other than a normal process going on," John Denbo told us in an interview.
Police were called, and because Maylee was no longer a patient, they began an investigation.
"We typically do not investigate deaths at medical facilities," Rolla Police Captain Jason Smith said. "In this sense, she was not a patient, which makes it a little bit suspicious. As for what the cause is we’re looking into that right now."
An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, but no results have been released yet. If toxicology results are needed, finding a cause of death could take longer.
At this point, hospital officials say there is no indication of any foul play, but no one knows what happened either.
"This is literally the last thing you want to hear. Particularly when you’re told the deceased is a deceased visitor, which is what the young lady was, then you find it was a 26-year-old new mother," Denbo says.
Baby Blake is being kept at the Phelps County Medical Center while the Department of Families and Children determines where he will go next. There is no father of record according to hospital officials.
If you have any information regarding this case, call Detective Robert Jones at (573) 308-1213.