An Ohio police department released jaw-dropping photos of an adult couple who apparently overdosed on heroin in the front seat of an SUV as a 4-year-old boy sat in back.
East Liverpool police on Thursday admitted they were going for “shock” value when they posted the pictures to the department’s Facebook page.
“We feel it necessary to show the other side of this horrible drug,” the officials wrote in a caption. “We feel we need to be a voice for the children caught up in this horrible mess.
“This child can’t speak for himself but we are hopeful this story can convince another user to think twice about injecting this poison while having a child in their custody.”
Officer Kevin Thompson on Wednesday spotted the dark Ford Explorer swerving in and out of traffic and crossing over the double yellow line, police said.
The driver, James Acord, suddenly slammed on the brakes to avoid barreling into a school bus that was dropping off kids, cops said. Acord came to a screeching halt in the middle of the street.
When Thompson approached the driver’s side door and peered inside, he couldn’t believe his eyes.
Acord was nodding off and mumbling incoherently while trying to tell Thompson that he was driving his front-seat passenger, Rhonda Pasek, to the hospital.
Pasek had fallen unconscious and was turning blue with a pink powdery substance in a folded piece of paper between her legs.
Acord started switching gears to try to drive away, but Thompson quickly reached inside the SUV, turned off the engine and removed the keys, cops said. Minutes later, Acord passed out, too.
The 4-year-old boy in the back seat was later identified as Pasek’s son.
Emergency Medical Service workers responded and administered the drug Narcan to reverse the effects of a heroin overdose.
The pair eventually regained consciousness and were rushed to the hospital, where they were listed in stable condition.
Acord was charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated, endangering children, and slowing or stopping in a roadway.
Pasek was charged with endangering children, public intoxication and not wearing a seat belt.
Columbiana County Children’s Services took custody of Pasek’s child.