A North Carolina mother is facing additional charges stemming from the fatal overdose of her nine-month-old daughter from a mixture of heroin and fentanyl.
Lacrystal Renee McClain, 30, faces a child neglect felony charge in addition to her previous charges of conspiring to traffic heroin and maintaining a residence to store or sell drugs. Her nine-month-old daughter, Allie Gaines, died after ingesting heroin and fentanyl found on a piece of paper Nov. 15, the Associated Press reported.
Allie’s father, 33-year-old Albert Gaines, Jr., was already in custody after police arrested him at his home Dec. 7 on charges of heroin possession with intent to sell, possession of cocaine and gun possession by a felon. Authorities recently charged Gaines with felony child abuse due to the death of the infant girl.
The investigation into Allie Gaines’ death is ongoing, and authorities say more charges could be filed against her parents. Officials do not currently know “how the baby obtained and swallowed the paper” containing then deadly substances.
Children are suffering the results of rampant opioid abuse throughout the country as the crisis continues to deteriorate.
An 18-month-old boy died from an opioid overdose June 4th in Ohio after his nine-year-old brother saw him playing with their mother’s drug baggie. The mother originally dialed 911 but hung up before officers could get an address.
The nine-year-old boy tried to get his mom back on the phone to speak with the dispatcher but was unsuccessful. The mother fled the scene when police arrived and was later arrested in another county for an outstanding warrant.
A 16-month-old baby suffered a near-fatal drug overdose in Deleware August 2017 after finding and ingesting heroin from his mother’s drug bags. An unnamed cousin brought the baby to a local hospital where personnel revived the boy with overdose reversal drug Narcan.
“You have the addict who chooses to take the drug…but then when people who don’t make that choice to take the drugs are impacted or hurt in some way, I think that’s angering,” Delaware County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Eric Hoffman said in August 2017, according to WISH TV. “I’m sure there are a lot [who] live in that horrible environment where they see their parents use heroin, abuse heroin and they’re there for heroin deals.”
Drug overdose deaths surged in 2016 by 21 percent, claiming more than 64,000 lives, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data. The increase is driven primarily by opioids, which claimed 42,249 lives in 2016 — a 28 percent increase over the roughly 33,000 lives lost to opioids in 2015.
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