Babysitter for Fairfax heroin overdose baby given probation
The babysitter for a five-month-old Fairfax County boy, who overdosed on heroin last year, was given a three-year suspended sentence for child abuse Friday in Fairfax Circuit Court, but the judge told the woman if she failed a drug test, he would impose the entire three-year term.
Erin C. Flynn, 32, was one of two adults who was left in charge of the baby last July by the boy's mother, Marilyn R. Fischl. Flynn testified that Fischl had provided heroin to Patrick Hall and Flynn while Fischl took another child to a doctor's appointment.
At Fischl's trial last month, Flynn testified that she and Hall snorted heroin, and that Flynn then went outside to smoke cigarettes. When she returned, the baby was in his car seat with a piece of paper in his hand that "might have been the piece of paper that Patrick and I had consumed heroin off of," Flynn said.
The baby was rushed to the emergency room and has since recovered.
The jury convicted Fischl of felony child neglect, but then imposed a 30-day sentence. Flynn pleaded guilty on March 17 to felony child abuse and has been in jail ever since. She testified at Fischl's trial and also at the preliminary hearing for Hall and Fischl's husband, Rafael Preston, whose cases are pending.
Fairfax Circuit Court Judge Michael F. Devine said he thought Fischl and Flynn were equally culpable in the episode. He noted that Flynn has already served more than Fischl's 30-day sentence, and in placing Flynn on three years of active probation, informed her that if she were found to still be using heroin, her probation would be violated and he would impose the full three-year sentence.
-- Tom Jackman
May 21, 2010; 3:20 PM ET
Categories: Fairfax , Narcotics , Tom Jackman , Updates
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