Alexandria Sladon-Marler, 33, was arrested Monday on a charge of aggravated manslaughter, the Miami Herald reported. Her attorney, Melissa McNeill, says she is mentally ill.
Broward County Circuit Judge John Hurley commented on Sladon-Marler's history of arrests for crimes such as public drunkenness and petty theft. Sladon-Marler appeared from the county jail by video link.
"You've been in my courtroom many a time,'' Hurley said.
The baby was found Aug. 10 in a dumpster at the Fort Lauderdale Beach Palace and Suites Hotel, where Sladon-Marler had been living. A medical examiner said the boy's lungs had air in them, suggesting he was born alive.
Sladon-Marler was hospitalized at Broward Health Medical Center around the time the body was found. She allegedly told a doctor there who said she had just had a baby that she had had a late-term abortion.
Investigators say there was an umbilical cord still attached to the baby that matched one the doctor found.
McNeill, a public defender, said her client has a long history of mental problems and suffered brain damage in a car crash when she was 15. McNeill said Sladon-Marler's family tried to have her committed for substance abuse treatment in June.
"So you have somebody who has mental health issues, neurological issues and substance abuse issues, all going untreated,'' McNeill said.
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