ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)– It’s a disturbing case of child neglect in an Annapolis fast food parking lot. Anne Arundel County police arrest a couple they say passed out, high on drugs with their 8-month-old baby in the backseat of their car.
Monique Griego has more on the investigation.
Police say the couple was smoking synthetic marijuana. It’s a drug that’s poses some unique problems for law enforcement.
Saturday evening just after 5 p.m., passersby at an Annapolis McDonald’s spotted a strange scene: a man and woman unresponsive in a car with their infant son unattended in the back seat. Cops called to the scene say they quickly realized the couple was high on drugs.
“When our officers and paramedics arrived they had to physically wake up the two adults who stumbled out of the vehicle,” said Lt. T.J. Smith, Anne Arundel County Police.
Smith says inside the car officers found packages of synthetic marijuana and devices used to smoke it out in plain view.
Investigators arrested 20-year-olds Brooke Michael and Michael May.
Both are charged with possession and child neglect.
“We’re lucky we’re not talking about a tragedy because there was an 8-month-old infant in the backseat,” Smith said.
Police say when the couple got out of the car, they were so out of it they could barely walk or talk.
“Not only do you have your child in the car, but you’re doing drugs in front of your child. It’s very sad,” said Yoka Browning, of Annapolis.
Synthetic marijuana, in many cases, can still be bought over the counter.
“I mean it’s easier to get than regular weed and it’s better, they claim, to do it more,” said Jimmy Burnett, of Annapolis.
While there are federal and state laws banning the drug, most only outlaw certain compounds used to create it. The problem with that is makers can just change up the chemicals.
“So if they are selling it today, it might be a different product tomorrow that’s not captured in a law as being illegal,” Smith said.
But this case is an example of why police say it’s just as dangerous as any other illegal drug.
The 8-month-old baby was taken to the hospital. After being checked out, he was released to his grandfather.
Child Protective Services was also called in to investigate.
In October, a new Maryland law bans retailers from selling synthetic marijuana and tobacco. A violation would cause the business to lose its tobacco license.
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