A mother and father have been accused of injecting their three small children with heroin.
Ashlee Hutt, 24, and partner Leroy McIver, 25, allegedly told the kids – daughters aged two and four, and a son aged six – they were being given “feel-good medicine” and “sleeping juice”.
Puncture marks and bruising consistent with needle injections were found on the children’s bodies after they were taken from home in November last year, while child welfare officials investigated claims against the couple.
Tests allegedly found low levels of what was believed to be heroin in two of the children.
The couple was arrested after someone tipped off Child Protective Services, claiming to have seen Hutt inject her children at home in Spanaway, Washington.
Pierce County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Detective Ed Troyer reported: “Some of the statements [the children] made were very disturbing about how they would get “sleeping juice” to go to sleep and it was injected into them by needle.”
The six-year-old boy told investigators his mom and dad gave him “feel-good medicine” with a needle, a probable cause affidavit revealed.
The boy described his medicine as “a white powder which was mixed with water” and then injected into them.
After being injected the children would go to sleep, the affidavit stated.
Investigators found marks, bruising and cuts on the younger girl’s body, indicative of heroin injection, the News Tribune reported.
Heroin was detected in the two-year-old girl after one of her hairs was tested.
Under questioning, Hutt and McIver admitted to being heroin addicts.
A neighbour told Kiro 7 the children are now in foster homes and “they’re doing well”.
Hutt was arrested on October 28 and arraigned on Monday October 31, while McIver was detained on September 2 on unrelated charges.
Both have pleaded not guilty to three counts of second-degree child assault, unlawful delivery of a controlled substance to a person under 18, and second-degree criminal mistreatment.
A trial has been set for December 20.