Police are on the hunt for the father of Baby Hope, the little girl who was found dead and stuffed inside a cooler 22 years ago.
Detectives made a break in the case earlier this week when they confirmed the identity of Baby Hope's mother. She was being questioned by police, but is not a suspect, sources told The New York Daily News.
The mother never saw Baby Hope after her father took the girl and another daughter away following the couple's split in 1991.
Baby Hope was found on July 23 of that year, inside a blue and white cooler in a wooded area near the Dyckman Street exit off the Henry Hudson Parkway. It was later determined that she had been beaten, starved and sexually abused.
The mom told police that she was terrified of the father and never told anyone about her fears about her lost daughter, the News reports. The younger daughter was returned to the mother unharmed years later.
Police believe that the father is alive and resides in New York City, according to one source. There is also a possibility that he is in Mexico, another source said.
The new developments in the case were made after police made another push for information on the 22nd anniversary of the discovery of the body. A tipster told police that she believed she knew Baby Hope's sister, who said she had a sister who was killed 22 years ago. The sister led police to the mother, and police were able to confirm her relationship to Baby Hope through a DNA test.
It remains unclear whether any other relatives knew what happened to Baby Hope and why no one ever reported her missing when she disappeared.
Police say there is still "so much work to do," the News reports.