Pennsylvania woman charged after baby’s death blamed on drugs in breast milk


A Philadelphia-area woman was charged on Friday with criminal homicide in the April 2 death of her 11-week-old son, reports The Morning Call. Jones was sent to Bucks County Jail after being unable to post bail.

The District Attorney's Office said an autopsy found the baby died from a combination of methadone, amphetamine and methamphetamine that was transmitted through Jones' breast milk. In 2012, another California mother was sentenced to six years in prison after her 6-week-old baby died after ingesting breast milk that also contained methamphetamine. After Jones woke up around 3 the infant's cries, she made a decision to breastfeed him instead of going downstairs to mix a bottle.

Jones said that she fed the baby the formula after husband left for work, placed her son in a bassinet and fell asleep, the affidavit said.

An hour later, the baby was found pale, bleeding, prompting the mother to perform CPR. New Britain Township Police and Bucks County Detectives believe the fatal drugs entered the baby's body through the mother's breast milk.

The suspect reportedly told investigators she was taking prescription methadone because of an addiction to painkillers when her child died April 2.

According to charging documents, Jones says she had been breastfeeding the baby but had switched to formula three days earlier, saying the infant wasn't getting enough milk from breastfeeding.

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On the morning of his death, however, Jones told police she chose to try again at around 3 a.m. because she was too exhausted to walk downstairs and prepare a bottle of formula.

The baby was found to be in cardiac arrest and pronounced dead at 8.29am, according to Fox 29.

Bail has been set at $3 million cash.

According to researchers behind an article in Canadian Family Physician, methadone exposure through breast milk is minimal. In 2014, Stephanie Greene was given a 20-year prison sentence in SC for the death of her 46-day-old baby, who died in November 2010 of respiratory failure.

Jones' attorney Louis Busico said the baby's death was not intentional, according to the district attorney's office statement.