Children removed from apartment after overdosed couple passes out

TRENTON — Police called to an apartment in the 3300 block of Van Horn about 5 p.m. Monday on word of an unattended child found a couple passed out from overdosing on painkillers.

A caller said a boy about 2 years old had been running around outside for nearly four hours with no supervision. Police found him in a hallway and he was able to show them where he lived.

Inside the apartment, officers announced their presence, but heard only a baby crying from a back bedroom. In that room they found a crib containing the baby next to a 26-year-old man and a woman who were passed out. About six feet away was a walk-in closet containing a 6-foot boa constrictor inside an aquarium.

After verbal attempts to wake the two failed, officers shook the woman’s leg and woke her up. They said she was highly impaired by what they believed were narcotics. She could not answer their questions after stumbling into the living room and had trouble comprehending why they were there.

She told officers she had been taking painkillers and showed them several bottles, some dated July 12. Police said she had taken at least three times the recommended dosage.

The man also was impaired by narcotics, they said, but after being awakened was more attentive than the woman. After trying to give them a false name, a records check of his real name showed he was a parole absconder with four arrest warrants outstanding, three from Brownstown Township and one from Lansing. He then was arrested.

The woman was taken to Oakwood Southshore Medical Center for mental evaluation. The children were taken to the woman’s mother’s house in Westland for the night until child protection authorities could be contacted about their situation.

Police said the baby, a 1-year-old boy, was hungry and given a bottle of formula by officers. Animal control was contacted to remove the snake.

— Tom Tigani