Sheriff's deputies find baby buried alive near Lolo Hot Springs

LOLO - The Missoula County Sheriff's Office says one man is now facing criminal charges after a baby was rescued from being buried alive in the mountains. 

Around 8 pm on Saturday, July 7th, 911 received a call that a man was acting strangely in the Lolo Hot Springs area. The caller told dispatch the man was threatening people and saying he had a gun while reaching into his pockets. When law enforcement arrived, they learned the suspect, identified as 32-year-old Francis Carlton Crowley, had left the scene and a 5-month-old child left in his care had not been seen for several hours.

Eventually, Crowley returned to the hot springs and was apprehended. During questioning, he appeared to be under the influence of drugs and indicated the baby was buried somewhere in the mountains. A ground search ensued and lasted for 6 hours before a deputy heard a faint cry.

The baby was found alive, face down, buried under a pile of sticks and debris wearing a wet, soiled onesie. The infant had survived in the woods by itself for more than 9 hours before being rescued and taken to the hospital where authorities say the child is in good condition.

Crowley is being held at the Missoula County Detention Facility on charges of criminal endangerment with additional charges to follow.

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