When it comes to determining child custody, it is not uncommon for parents to disagree on terms. However, courts almost always make decisions based on the best interests of the children involved. In a recent Connecticut case, a 29-year-old woman lost physical custody of her children because the state decided it was in their best interests. The woman reportedly gave her 4-year-old alcohol and her 10-month-old both alcohol and cocaine. Connecticut Family Lawyer
The woman was at Success Village playground with her two children and 33-year-old friend when a mother at the park phoned the police about what she saw. The 29-year-old mother of two allegedly pressured her 4-year-old into finishing a 40-ounce bottle of beer. According to witnesses, she taunted him after he finished the beer. Police arrested the mother and her friend at the scene, and the children were rushed to the hospital.
When they arrived, medical officials tested the children for alcohol and cocaine. The baby tested positive for both; the 4-year-old tested positive for alcohol. Experts say that both alcohol and drugs have much stronger effects on children because of their underdeveloped bodies. Detrimental effects of both substances could have much longer-lasting effects on the children than on most adult individuals. Child brain development can easily be affected by substances such as these.
The 29-year-old mother admitted to smoking crack before heading to the park, but did not know how her baby tested positive for cocaine. She said she was not breast feeding the child.
The Department of Children and Families now has custody of both the 4-year-old and the 10-month-old. The two women are being charged with two counts of second-degree assault and two counts of risking the well-being of a child. Both are in jail and have a bail set at $100,000.
As this case shows, the state of Connecticut can become involved in family matters if it deems it necessary. If certain lifestyle changes and qualifications are met, however, the state may decide to return children to their parents. If you have concerns about your child custody situation or other family law matters, speaking to an experienced attorney may be helpful.
Source: International Business Times, “Mother Gives Children Beer and Cocaine at Connecticut Playground,” 22 July 2011