Parents pass out by school bus after overdosing with 4-year-old in backseat of car

Parents pass out by school bus after overdosing with 4-year-old in backseat of car
Published: 2016 September 09 21:44:17 (7149 Views)
A police department in Ohio has shared on Facebook disturbing photos of a man and woman passed out in a car with a toddler in the backseat after the pair had allegedly overdosed on heroin.

The unsettling images appeared on the City of East Liverpool's social media page on Thursday.

Officials say they decided to make the photos public to raise awareness of the heroin epidemic in the state, and also to try and deter people from using drugs while having children in their care.

Addiction to opioids such as heroin, morphine, fentanyl and codeine in the US has reached the proportions of a full-blown epidemic in recent years.

In Ohio, which has been among the states hardest hit by the overdose epidemic, there were 3,000 unintentional drug overdoses last year, at an average of eight per day.

'We are well aware that some may be offended by these images and for that we are truly sorry, but it is time that the non drug using public sees what we are now dealing with on a daily basis,' it says in the caption accompanying the photos.

An East Liverpool police officer was driving along St Clair Avenue at around 3.11pm Thursday when he spotted a dark Ford Explorer with West Virginia plates that was driving erratically before screeching to a stop near a school bus that was dropping off children, according to an arrest report that was also shared on Facebook.

When the officer approached the vehicle, he noticed that the driver, identified as 47-year-old James Acord, appeared intoxicated, with his head bobbing back and forth and his speech almost unintelligible.

Acord told the officer that he was driving 50-year-old Rhonda Pasek to a hospital. The woman was slumped over in the front passenger seat.



According to police, Acord then made an attempt to drive away, but at that moment the officer reached into the car and pulled the keys out of the ignition.

For decades, heroin was considered the drug of choice of low-income youths living in inner-city neighborhoods because it was readily available and cheap. Now, it is affecting suburban middle-class white adults.

A study published in JAMA Psychiatry in 2014 found that the dramatic shift in demographics is likely linked to the increasing availability of and demand for prescription opioids.

Paramedics who were summoned to the scene administered Narcan - a drug used to counteract the effects of a heroin overdose - to Pasek and Acord, who by that point had passed out as well. The couple were then taken to East Liverpool City Hospital to be evaluated.

Acord was later charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated, endangering children, and slowing or stopping in a road.

He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to 180 days in jail for each of the first two charges, according to The Weirton Daily Times. The last count of impeding traffic was dropped.

Acord's punishment also includes a three-year license suspension and a $475 fine, reported the station WTOV.  

Pasek was charged with endangering children, public intoxication and not wearing a seatbelt. She pleaded not guilty and was ordered held on $150,000 bond pending her next court appearance scheduled for September 15.

Her young son has been placed in the custody of Columbiana County Children's Services.



Source - Dailymail

Tags: drugs, overdose,
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