Pa. mother accused of killing baby with drug-laced breast milk

Samantha Whitney Jones 30 is shown in this undated booking

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.

An autopsy found that the baby died from a combination of methadone, amphetamine and methamphetamine, allegedly transmitted through Jones' breast milk.

Jones told police that she was prescribed methadone for a painkiller addiction and was taking it both before and after giving birth to her son. Later she added that she switched over three days prior because she thought he wasn't getting enough breastmilk and he wasn't sleeping well.

The baby was lying in his bassinet, pale and not breathing with "bloody mucous coming out of his nose", according to the affidavit. She said that she had taken it during her pregnancy, and that she was taking it when her baby, R.J., died.

A judge set Jones' bail at $3 million, cash, and has instructed her not to be in contact with anyone under 18-years-old. The cause of death, prosecutors say, was a "lethal combination of drugs" ingested through Jones' breast milk.

A message seeking comment from her lawyer, Louis Busico, wasn't returned today.

Bucks mother charged in infant's death from drug-tainted breast milk
She Breastfed Her Child, and Officials Say It Killed Him

When the baby started crying Jones asked her husband to prepare a bottle of formula, authorities say. Jones said she called out to her mother, who was in the house and called 911, and performed CPR under the instruction of a dispatcher.

New Britain Township police arrived at 7:38 a.m.to find the baby in cardiac arrest. He rushed by an ambulance to Doylestown Hospital and was pronounced dead at 8:29 in the emergency room.

A separate article in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology though says mothers should avoid breastfeeding for 48 hours after recreational amphetamine use.

In 2002, California mother Amy Prien was charged with second-degree murder after the coroner's office confirmed that her 3-month-old son overdosed on methamphetamine, which entered his system through breast milk.

According to researchers behind an article in Canadian Family Physician, methadone exposure through breast milk is minimal. Jones has a 2-year-old son who is in the care of his father.

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