A mom tried to sell her baby for $500 in a Taco Bell in Vancouver, Washington last week, joining a long tradition of people attempting to sell their children in down-market chains. 36-year-old Heidi Knowles approached a woman at the restaurant and tried to hand her her baby boy, making it clear that he was for sale. The woman called 911 and Knowles was arrested. She and the baby had been living in a motel; Knowles had reportedly claimed to be the mother of five children, but none lived with her other than the baby in question. The surprising thing about this story is how un-surprising it is. Seems like every week we read another “People Try to Sell Baby” story. In no particular order:
And so on. Most of these stories have a number of elements in common: 1) attempt to sell a human baby, 2) questionable venue of sale (Walmart, Taco Bell, Petsmart parking lot), 3) use of eBay or Craigslist, and 4) asking for a sad, puny amount of money ($25??). This is crying out for a trend piece.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 17, 2011