Police Accuse Utah Parents of Feeding Opioid Pills to Newborn Baby

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Utah authorities have arrested a mother and father for allegedly giving their newborn daughter - who was born addicted to heroin - more drugs on the day she was born so she wouldn't show withdrawal symptoms while in the hospital, PEOPLE confirms.

Drug addiction is now the second leading cause for removal from parental custody, following child neglect, which social workers note is often exacerbated by drug use in the home. After their release, investigators learned the two may be doing drugs again so they drew up another warrant.

"Child endangerment refers to an act or omission that renders a child to psychological, emotional or physical abuse. The child who is subjected to child endangerment is called an abused child or a neglected child", according to USlegal.com.

Ms Christenson, 26, and her partner Colby Wilde, 29, admitted they had given their daughter drugs used treat heroin withdrawal at the hospital where she was born on 9 April, according to local news channel KUTV.

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Christenson used heroin and prescription pain medication during her pregnancy, police say, and the baby girl was born addicted to drugs.

A three-month-old baby girl who tested positive for meth, heroin, and morphine was allegedly dosed with a painkiller by her parents hours after her birth in April to mask the girl's addiction from hospital staff.

"I don't have any doubt that Colby and Lacy love their kids", Sgt. Spencer Cannon of the Utah County Sheriff's Office told KSTU.

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"You've got an infant who can not do anything for herself, and the people who should be providing her nurture, and love, and care, are the ones who are harming their child". This medication was found in pill form and in crushed pill form. "They would wet a finger dip it in the crushed up pills and apply it to the gums of the child", Cannon said.

The father dropped his two-month-old daughter in her auto seat twice while fleeing officers at a Walmart in Spanish Fork, a city around 50 miles south of Salt Lake City, after police were called to reports of a theft at the store. Wilde was accused of stealing an item and trying to get a refund pretending he had bought the thing earlier.

After Wilde was given a gift card, he was confronted by story security while carrying the couple's then 2-month-old child in a auto seat. He then slammed into the exit doors as they closed, dropping his daughter, who was in a vehicle seat at the time, police said.

Panicked Wilde grabbed the auto seat and tried to flee through another door. Police officials caught Wilde, and he was charged with driving under the influence, possession of methamphetamine and heroin, driving without insurance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was arrested on suspicion of DUI and Christenson, who was at the store with her other three sons during the ordeal, was arrested due to an outstanding warrant.

Deputies served a search warrant on the house and found numerous drug and paraphernalia items, he said.

Family Services took the children into their custody and reported that the two youngest boys tested positive for second-hand methamphetamine smoke. Wilde was released from jail July 5 after posting a $7,500 bond.

The couple remains in jail, as their bail was set at $10,000 each.

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