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Video: Toddler tries to wake up mom who apparently OD’d on drugs

The incident occurred last Sunday morning in a Lawrence dollar store. Cellphone video was taken of an unconscious woman lying in an aisle of the store. A little girl, dressed in pink, is crying and screaming as she tries to wake her mom up. The toddler can be seen grabbing her mother’s arm and making other attempts to get her mother up.

Paramedics were called and after giving the woman two doses of Narcan, she regained consciousness. The woman, later identified as Mandy McGowen of New Hampshire, initially told police she did not use drugs and was merely tired. According to Police Chief James Fitzgerald, when officers went through the diaper bag McGowen was carrying they found straws cut into pieces and a white residue police believed to be a drug.

The girl and her mother were both taken to hospital and the two-year-old was later taken into care after the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families was notified. Although McGowen has not yet been charged, it is expected she will face a charge of child endangerment.

Although police noted it would have been better if the person with the cellphone had gone to the aid of the frightened child instead of filming her with her mother, police now have the video and intend to use it if and when McGowen is prosecuted.

On Wednesday, the Lawrence Police Department made the decision to release the video to the public. While they acknowledge the video is disturbing they are hoping it will help educate the public about the dangers of opiates and other drugs and what can happen when a person overdoses. Although most people do not have any experience with these types of situations, first responders see them every day. Fitzpatrick said McGowen was lucky to be alive.

Although McGowen initially denied using any drugs, WBZ-TV reports the 36-year-old has admitted she has a problem and has hit rock bottom. She said she was in a car with a friend and had used fantanyl when she got a call to pick up her little girl. The friend needed to go to Lawrence and McGowen decided she needed to get diapers and decided to go to the dollar store. She does not remember anything after that.

After she was initially denied help, McGowen was accepted into a treatment centre yesterday and hopes she can get well and regain custody of her daughter.

Image of James Acord and Rhonda Paskek passed out from drug overdose in car while Paskek s four-year...

Image of James Acord and Rhonda Paskek passed out from drug overdose in car while Paskek’s four-year-old grandson looks on
East Liverpool Police Department

This was the second time this month an American police department released graphic images of an overdose in the hopes it will serve as a deterrent to drug use. A car driven by James Acord drifted off the road and ended up in a ditch. Both Acord and Rhonda Pasek were passed out in the front of the car from apparent drug overdoses. A picture taken by officers with the East Liverpool, Ohio police shows the unconscious couple as well as Pasek’s four-year-old grandson staring at the camera from the backseat. The couple were arrested on child endangerment charges.

According to the Lawrence police chief, young children are present in about 10 percent of overdose cases they are called to.

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