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West Fargo woman charged in drowning is in Douglas County Jail

FARGO — A West Fargo woman charged with drowning her newborn was arrested in Pope County, taken to the Douglas County Jail and will be brought back to Cass County.

Ginny Lubitz, 36, faces one count of murder and a count of attempted murder stemming from her baby's death on May 5. She was arrested by Pope County authorities on Tuesday afternoon, June 26, the same day a Cass County arrest warrant was issued.

She waived her extradition at a Wednesday, June 27, hearing in Pope County, court records show.

She is currently at Douglas County Jail on behalf of Pope County, according to jail administrator Jackie Notch. Notch said Cass County has 14 days to pick her up, but that will likely happen sooner.

Court records did not list an attorney for Lubitz.

According to court documents:

Fargo police, medics and firefighters were dispatched at 9:39 p.m. May 5 to a south Fargo apartment for a report of a deceased newborn.

Officers found Lubitz in the bathroom. The newborn, who had been removed from the bathroom, was in the living room with Lubitz's friend and was pronounced dead at 9:51 p.m.

That friend and another friend told police they found Lubitz locked in the bathroom, where she was lying naked on the floor.

The friends saw Lubitz had given birth and asked where the baby was. Lubitz nodded toward the bathtub where the friends found the newborn face down in about an inch of water.

Lubitz told one friend not to bother with CPR and that the baby never had any respirations.

An autopsy "indicated an apparent live birth" and said the cause of death was "drowning from being placed face down in the bathtub."

A toxicology report showed the child had measurable levels of amphetamine and methamphetamine in his system. She told police she had not ingested meth for a few months.

Lubitz told police she learned she was pregnant in August or September. She planned to have an abortion, but by November, she believed she'd had a miscarriage.

She told police she realized she was still pregnant in mid-April. Lubitz told police she did not know she was in labor on May 5. She said she took a bath and fell asleep, and when she awoke, her stomach felt tight. She tried to start water for a new bath, and as she leaned her stomach on the tub edge, she gave birth within seconds.

Lubitz told police she cut the umbilical cord before trying to call 911, but wasn't able to manipulate the phone to dial. She said she did not remember anything she did after that.

A search of Lubitz's cellphone revealed messages from that morning and afternoon indicating that her stomach hurt as well as a web search that afternoon about pushing during childbirth. Web history from February and March showed searches for how to abort or terminate late-term or unwanted pregnancies through home methods.

Lubitz told police she did the searches for a 16-year-old relative who was pregnant, but declined to give the relative's name.

Lubitz couldn't be reached for comment Tuesday.