Florence mother charged after toddler allegedly ingests methadone

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) – A Florence mother was arrested for unlawful neglect of a child Thursday; investigators allege her 14-month-child was hospitalized after ingesting methadone from an open container left within reach of the toddler.

Ashley Nicole Matthews, 23, was arrested on June 5 by investigators with the Florence County Sheriff's Office.

According to investigators, on or about March 1, 2014, deputies and EMS workers were called to Matthews' residence on South Mayfield Terrance, as her 14-month-old child was not breathing. CPR was performed en route to the hospital, where the child was placed on a ventilator. After extensive medical treatment, the child recovered and was released from the hospital.

Investigators allege that the child ingested an unknown amount of methadone from an open container left within reach of the toddler by Matthews. After being released from the hospital, Department of Social Services placed the child in the custody of a family member.

Neglect of a child is a felony punishable by a fine, up to 10 years in prison, or both.

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