Sick GoFundMe twist after woman 'cut baby boy from dead teen's womb'

Disturbing new details of how a mother plotted for months to acquire a newborn before she and her daughter strangled a pregnant woman and cut her baby from her womb have emerged.

Clarisa Figueroa, 46, continued the elaborate plan after the child was rushed to hospital in a critical condition, setting up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for the baby.

She said the crowdfunding was for the funeral of her own dying baby, a spokeswoman for Ochoa-Lopez's family.

Marlen Ochoa-Lopez, 19, was nine months pregnant when she was lured to the Chicago home where Figueroa lived with her daughter, Desiree, by Facebook postings offering free baby clothes.

When she arrived, the daughter showed her a photo album of her late brother to distract her as her mother started trying to strangle her with a cord, prosecutor Jim Murphy said.

When Ochoa-Lopez managed to get her fingers under the cord, Clarisa Figueroa yelled at her 24-year-old daughter: "You're not doing your f---ing job!"

The daughter then pried Ochoa-Lopez's fingers from the cord "one by one" while her mother continued to strangle the teen for another five minutes, Murphy said.

Clarisa Figueroa allegedly set up a GoFundMe page for the baby which was cut from Ochoa-Lopez's stomach. Source: AP

Once Ochoa-Lopez showed no signs of life, Figueroa cut her open with a butcher's knife, removed the placenta and the baby, then put the baby in a bucket with the umbilical cord still attached, Mr Murphy said, reading from court documents.

Facebook plot developed months ago

The plot may have originated in late 2018, when Figueroa told her family she was pregnant and later posted on Facebook an ultrasound and photos of a room decorated for a baby.

Desiree Figueroa was surprised, Murphy said, because her mother had previously had her fallopian tubes tied to prevent pregnancy.

Prosecutors highlighted that Clarisa Figueroa made the announcement about being pregnant not long after one of her adult sons had died of natural causes.

The mother connected with Ochoa-Lopez on March 5 via a Facebook page for pregnant women.

Desiree Figueroa, who is charged in the death of 19-year-old expectant mother Marlen Ochoa-Lopez. Source: AP

"Who is due in May?" she asked in one message. "Where is the May mammas at?"

Ochoa-Lopez, seven months' pregnant at the time, responded, and Figueroa made the offer of free clothes, prosecutors said.

When Figueroa first asked her daughter to help her kill someone to get a baby, the daughter initially said no, Murphy said. He also revealed publicly for the first time that Desiree Figueroa is four months' pregnant.

Boyfriend told plot was April Fool’s joke

They first met with Ochoa-Lopez around April 1, though she left unharmed that day.

Desiree Figueroa had told her boyfriend about her mother's intention to kill Ochoa-Lopez, and he warned her he would call police if they harmed the young woman.

The prosecutor said Clarisa Figueroa later told the boyfriend the whole scheme had been an April Fool's joke.

Ochoa-Lopez was killed when she returned a second time on April 23.

Marlen Ochoa-Lopez was lured to the Chicago property several times. Source: Facebook/Cecilia Garcia

After killing her, the mother and daughter allegedly wrapped her in a blanket and put the body into a large plastic bag.

They then dragged it outside and placed it in a garbage can in a hidden area next to their garage on Chicago's Southwest Side, about 7km from Ochoa-Lopez's own home, according to authorities.

Clarisa Figueroa then called 911, claiming that she had just delivered her own newborn baby and that it was not breathing, authorities said.

‘No signs’ of giving birth

When first responders arrived, the child was blue. They tried to resuscitate the infant and transported Clarisa Figueroa and the boy to a nearby hospital.

When she went to the hospital, doctors who examined her found "no signs consistent with a woman who had just delivered a baby."

She also had blood on her arms, hands and face that authorities later determined was from Ochoa-Lopez, prosecutors said.

It was not clear whether the hospital contacted police.

In a statement issued Friday, Christ Medical Center in suburban Oak Lawn declined to comment, citing federal and state regulations.

Oak Lawn police said they were not contacted about Figueroa by the medical centre or any other agency, including the Chicago Police Department.

The boy remained hospitalised on Friday in grave condition and was not expected to survive, police said.

Arnulfo Ochoa, the father of Marlen Ochoa-Lopez, is surrounded by family members and supporters, as he walks into the Cook County medical examiner's office to identify his daughter's body. Source: AP

Clarisa Figueroa ‘set up GoFundMe for baby’

Police did not connect Ochoa-Lopez's disappearance and the 911 call about the baby until May 7, when friends of the teen directed detectives to her social media account, which showed she had communicated with Clarisa Figueroa.

At the same time, Clarisa Figueroa had started a GoFundMe campaign for the funeral of what she said was her dying baby, said Sara Walker, a spokeswoman for Ochoa-Lopez's family.

Police then conducted DNA tests, which showed that Ochoa-Lopez and her husband, Yiovanni Lopez, were actually his parents.

When police arrived to question Clarisa Figueroa, her daughter told them that her mother was in the hospital with some kind of leg injury, before adding that she had just delivered a baby, Brendan Deenihan, deputy chief of detectives said.

Cook County Judge Susana Ortiz denied bond to the Figueroas, who are charged with murder, saying she felt "the presumption is great" that they committed a "heinous and brutal murder" and that they pose "a real and present" danger to the community.

A memorial for Marlen Ochoa-Lopez. Souce: AP

She also denied bond to Clarisa Figueroa's boyfriend, 40-year-old Piotr Bobak, who is charged with the concealment of a homicide.

The mother's lawyer asked Ortiz to place the Figueroas in protective custody for their safety from other inmates, given "the nature of the case."

The arrests came three weeks after the disappearance of Ochoa-Lopez, whose decaying body was discovered this week with the cord still around her neck.

Police then searched the neighborhood and found Ochoa-Lopez's car a few blocks away. On Tuesday they returned with a search warrant.

Ochoa-Lopez's mother, Raquel Uriostegui, said her daughter was born in Mexico and came to the United States when she was two.

"My daughter was a very joyful girl. She had a lot of dreams," Ms Uriostegui said.

"She wanted to do great things, like all of us," added the victim’s husband.

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