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Crime Woman Arrested on Drug Charges After Abandoning 4-Month-Old That Isn't Hers at Walmart

04:56  04 december  2021
04:56  04 december  2021 Source:   newsweek.com

Jury holds pharmacies responsible for role in opioid crisis

  Jury holds pharmacies responsible for role in opioid crisis CLEVELAND (AP) — CVS, Walgreens and Walmart pharmacies recklessly distributed massive amounts of pain pills in two Ohio counties, a federal jury said Tuesday in a verdict that could set the tone for U.S. city and county governments that want to hold pharmacies accountable for their roles in the opioid crisis. Lake and Trumbull counties blamed the three chain pharmacies for not stopping the flood of pills that caused hundreds of overdose deaths and cost each of the two counties about $1 billion, said their attorney, who in court compared the pharmacies' dispensing to a gumball machine.

Melissa Smith, 37, was arrested Friday on various drug-related and other charges after she was reportedly seen in a Northport, Alabama, Walmart with an infant that wasn't hers in a shopping cart Thursday night, and the baby was later found abandoned, according to the Associated Press.

Exterior view of a Walmart store on August 23, 2020 in North Bergen, New Jersey. Police in Northport, Alabama said Friday two women have been arrested in connection to the abandonment of an infant at a local Walmart that occurred Thursday night. © Kena Betancur/VIEWpress via Getty Images Exterior view of a Walmart store on August 23, 2020 in North Bergen, New Jersey. Police in Northport, Alabama said Friday two women have been arrested in connection to the abandonment of an infant at a local Walmart that occurred Thursday night.

Police later announced the arrest of the baby's mother, Bethany Joy Boothe, 37, for an outstanding warrant for an unrelated traffic offense.

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Smith was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia and a controlled substance, according to WSFA News. Both women will face additional charges related to the abandonment of the infant, Northport Assistant Police Chief Keith Carpenter said Friday.

The 4-month-old girl was found in the jewelry section of the store and police were called around 8:30 p.m. Thursday night, the AP reported.

Police also said the two women were allegedly acquaintances, and it's unclear why Smith had the child with her in the Walmart, or where Boothe was at the time.

"We don't believe it was an abduction but we don't know the whole story yet," Carpenter said.

Police arrived and found Walmart's employees caring for the child and said she appeared healthy and was taken to a local hospital before being placed in the custody of the state's Department of Human Resources.

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Video: Jury holds pharmacies responsible for role in opioid crisis (Associated Press)

Police said Smith was identified as the woman previously with the infant from a purse found in the cart, along with security footage and witness statements, according to AL.com and WIAT News.

Carpenter said the incident is "sad and tragic," and the state will do everything it can to ensure the child is given a safe, stable environment going forward.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Smith was jailed with bail set at $17,500, a police statement said.

Court records weren't available to show whether Smith or Boothe had an attorney who could speak on their behalf.

A man witnessed an intruder inside his ex-wife's home who was wearing her bra and dress. He was able to flee but police received numerous tips from social media that helped them identify and arrest the suspect. Michael Burrell/istock © Michael Burrell/istock A man witnessed an intruder inside his ex-wife's home who was wearing her bra and dress. He was able to flee but police received numerous tips from social media that helped them identify and arrest the suspect. Michael Burrell/istock

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