Anahola couple rescues baby

  • Submitted Photo/The Garden Island

    Anahola Residents Jace Miner and Maile Freitas rescued a baby near the water Sunday, while walking on the Kapaa Bike Path.

  • Submitted Photo/The Garden Island

    The location near the Kapaa Bike Path where a two-year-old baby was found by a couple Sunday, who were out on a morning walk. The baby was found wearing only a diaper.

  • Submitted Photo/The Garden Island

    As soon as Jace Miner put the baby in his girlfriend’s arms, after rescuing her from near the water’s edge off of the Kapaa Bike path, the couple said the baby fell asleep.

KEALIA – Wearing only a diaper, a two-year-old baby girl was found by passersby Sunday, as they walked the Kapaa Bike Path.

The couple, Maile Freitas and Jace Miner of Anahola, had just set out on a Sunday morning stroll when they heard crying. “I told my boyfriend I heard a baby crying, so we looked all around,” Freitas said.

Eventually, they found the baby standing near the water at the bottom of a cliff, “and my boyfriend went for to get the baby,” Freitas said through tears on Monday.

Reaching the baby, Miner said, was difficult, because the slope was steep and there was a lot of metal debris left from the flood where the baby was standing. He was worried she could have cut her feet. The only way he could reach her, he said, was to slide down on his backside.

“Someone would had to have put her down there and left her down there,” Miner said.

Once they saw where the baby was, Miner said he didn’t think twice about rescuing her. “We all did what we had to do to save the baby. It hurt my heart that someone put a baby down there,” he said.

As he brought the baby up safely, Miner said he could tell the baby had been there a long time because of how soiled her diaper was.

As soon as the baby was placed in Freitas’ arms after the rescue, she fell asleep.

While passing by on her bike, Leiola Kamalani-Oliver of Anahola saw the stunned look on Freitas’ and Miner’s faces and asked if they were okay. They explained they had just found a baby by the water.

“The experience was shocking,” Kamalani-Oliver said.“ You can’t imagine a baby by themselves. I have eight kids and 23 grand kids. It was just shocking. You can’t comprehend the whole thing,” she said.

The three of them were stunned, but after a few moments Kamalani-Oliver called first responders. “You’re just trying to wrap your head around it. You can’t imagine a mother or father doing this,” she said.

The three of them, Miner said, are happy the baby is safe and in good hands.

“We’re going to make sure the baby is safe and has a good and healthy life,” he said.

Freitas said she believes God put her in the right spot and the right time to be a blessing and an angel for the baby. “A lot of people walk on that bike path and didn’t hear the baby crying,” she said.

As the ambulance was driving away, Freitas said she began to cry, because no one should treat a baby that way.

Both Freitas and Miner said they would adopt the child and raise her as their own.

Kamalani-Oliver said she was happy that Freitas heard the baby’s cries.

“The child, a two-year-old female, was found below the path in a rocky area, approximately 300 yards north of the restrooms at Kealia Beach; she was alert and had no injuries,” said Kim Tamaoka, spokesperson for the County of Kauai.

The child was transported by medics to Wilcox Medical Center, where she was released into the custody of Child Welfare Services.

“No arrests have yet been made at this time,” Tamaoka said.

This is an ongoing investigation.

•••

Bethany Freudenthal, Courts, Crime and County reporter, 652-7891 or bfreudenthal@thegardenisland.com

15 Comments
  1. Ken Hughes May 8, 2018 6:22 am Reply

    Aloha Jace! Good job!


    1. Debra May 8, 2018 1:37 pm Reply

      Great Job! Jace and I wife are the one of the many examples why Kauai is Aloha!! So happy the baby is safeπŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ™πŸ½πŸ€—πŸ’―


  2. Jenn Tyler May 8, 2018 7:22 am Reply

    Question: Could it be possible that the mom/dad went into the ocean and drowned either unintended or intentionally (suicide), and didn’t take the baby with them intentionally or an accident occurred?

    Just something to consider?


    1. Keira May 8, 2018 2:28 pm Reply

      The parents have been identified, known to be meth addicts they had other babies taken away previously.


      1. HeiHei808 May 8, 2018 9:05 pm Reply

        Check out Kauai Rants and Raves FB page. It has the whole backstory there.


  3. JAMES May 8, 2018 7:32 am Reply

    Poor kid. This is why some people should not have kids and why women need access to obtain abortions in the 1st or 2nd trimesters. Not that this mother would have had one, but better than her having another abandoned and unloved child that others have to care for. Sad anyway you look at it.


  4. andy May 8, 2018 7:49 am Reply

    One of the most shocking and bizarre things I’ve read in TGI in a long time…thank God for the happy ending courtesy of Jace and Maile! What on earth could explain…oh never mind, it’s beyond comprehension. I would like to suggest a possible sentence for the (presumably) guilty party or parties: LONG jail sentence followed by 12,000 hours of community service followed by another jail sentence. Seriously though, main thing is to make sure those responsible NEVER get another opportunity to neglect a child in such a potentially tragic way. What is the backstory here?


  5. debra kekaualua May 8, 2018 9:32 am Reply

    The first thing about this storyline that came to mind is an anahola, mauka kealia monument road of anahola market place where twelve children and their parents reside and that have been spotlighted often. IDK, but this is way over any lines drawn in the sand. REALLY? Kauai what has happened to us?


    1. HeiHei808 May 8, 2018 6:15 pm Reply

      What has happened to us is right? That family you speak of is shameful to us all. I feel sorry for the public service sector for having to deal with them. The father is a disgrace all fathers.


  6. Kyle Morrison May 8, 2018 10:01 am Reply

    They should name that little girl Anela, for the angels that God sent to watch over and rescue her.


  7. Kainoa May 8, 2018 12:02 pm Reply

    Abandonment is ugly


  8. HeiHei808 May 8, 2018 6:12 pm Reply

    What this article fails to mention, is that both parents are drug addicts. Bystanders remember seeing the Mom prior to this incident walking around with the baby, looking like she wanted to put her down. Then reconsidered after seeing people looking at her. The mom got out of KCCC not long ago and has two other children that her parents have custody of.


  9. Debra Kekaualua May 8, 2018 7:09 pm Reply

    Reminiscent of two year old Lacey Woolsey murder, incorrectly managed investigation, slam dunk the wrong brother! ‘The fifth seal’ book has the case hot, but there are problems, blocked access to those that are supposed to bring justice, protect and serve. What good are all those Mission Statements when No one in the corporate can be held responsible


  10. Larry May 8, 2018 8:51 pm Reply

    God gave them the ears to hear the baby. I was choked up from Wailua to Princeville about this but relieved the little girl.was rescued.


  11. Mimi May 9, 2018 8:59 am Reply

    Thank God baby was found & safe! No, abortion isn’t the answer, Jesus is! I hope Jayce & Miali can keep her!


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