Auburn couple charged with overdosing infant on methadone

Staff writerSeptember 27, 2013 

An Auburn couple overdosed their 6-week-old son on methadone and held off getting him medical treatment for fear of having the baby taken away, according to King County prosecutors.

The two have been charged with second-degree assault on a child and will be arraigned Oct. 7. Prosecutors also requested the couple not be allowed to see the boy, identified in court papers as L.T.

“The defendants’ joint decision to dose their newborn infant with methadone, (the father’s) subsequent failure to call 911 or otherwise seek emergency care for (the baby) and (the mother’s) decision to drive L.T. to the hospital rather than seek emergency medical assistance demonstrates the lack of parental concern and appreciation for the near-fatal overdose of their baby,” Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Cecelia Gregson wrote in court documents.

The baby was taken to Seattle Children’s Hospital on Sept. 16, where doctors called police after determining the newborn had 150 times more methadone in his system than would be possible to get from breastfeeding.

The mother admitted to injecting methadone in her son’s milk because she thought he was suffering withdrawal. The father said he unknowingly fed the baby the tainted milk while the child’s mother was at the store.

Although the boy was having trouble breathing, the father waited 15 to 20 minutes until the mother returned, according to court documents. She then called a friend, not an ambulance, court records show.

After the friend agreed the infant did not look OK, the mother drove him to the hospital.

She allegedly told police she “saved” their son because the father “just sat there” while the boy couldn’t breathe. The father told police he didn’t call 911 because he was afraid Child Protective Services would take his son.

Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653
stacia.glenn@thenewstribune.com

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