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Medical Examiner: Death Of Fetus Found In Shopping Bag Last Fall Was Homicide

Authorities remove evidence from a Herald Square Victoria's Secret after a possible fetus was discovered on Thursday. (Credit CBS 2)

Authorities remove evidence from a Herald Square Victoria’s Secret after a possible fetus was discovered on Thursday. (Credit CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The death of a fetus found in a shopping bag at the Herald Square Victoria’s Secret last fall has been ruled a homicide.

The New York City Medical Examiner’s office ruled Tuesday that the cause of death for the fetus was asphyxia, and the manner of death was a homicide.

On Oct. 17 of last year, a Victoria’s Secret security guard stopped 17-year-old Tiona Rodriguez, of Crown Heights, Brooklyn, and a friend on suspicion of shoplifting at the Herald Square store. The guard found the dead fetus in a shopping bag.

The teen had told officers she was carrying the child’s remains because she had delivered a day earlier and didn’t know what to do, authorities said in October.

Rodriguez was also hit with a shoplifting charge the day the fetus was found. There was no word late Tuesday on whether the charges could be upgraded, authorities told CBS 2.

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(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)