According to Huffington Post
, Carabinieri police began hunting for the man after an eyewitness, a prison officer, who happened to the passing, said he saw the man standing on the bridge and tossing the baby into the cold water 30 feet (10 meters) below. According to the witness, the man appeared very disturbed and when he was throwing the child into the water, he yelled.
New York Post
reports the man is an unemployed man with a criminal record for dealing in drugs.
Police found the man in another part of Rome and arrested him. Huffington Post
reports that a relative who spoke to the police said the man and his wife had quarrelled over custody of the child. The man suddenly grabbed the child and ran out of their home with him.
New York Post
reports the 26-year-old man has admitted to the police that he threw his child into the freezing water after an argument with the child's mother.
Fire brigade divers searched for the infant in the water, but strong currents, winds and poor weather conditions made the work difficult. According to a spokesman of the fire brigade service: "We're still searching, we'll search for as long as we can, but the snowfall and rain we've had these past few days has swelled the river, making it very difficult indeed."
Rome's deputy mayor Sveva Belvisio, said the news was "an appalling story which causes anguish and astonishment. It was an act of extreme cruelty." Montreal Gazette
reports Belvisio said: "Our thoughts go to the innocent child - a victim of the violence of a father who, instead of defending and protecting him, treated him as an object on which to vent his frustration." Belvisio called for an "immediate and exemplary sentence" for the man.
reports the man's identity has not been made public.