PLATTE COUNTY, MO — A 4-year-old girl was rushed to the hospital after the child drank wine. Her grandmother is charged with child endangerment.
The charge was filed against her in Platte County court this week. Court records show the girl’s blood alcohol content was nearly twice the legal limit for an adult to drive.
Investigators say grandmother Aretha A. McAdoo left a bag filled with wine from a box of wine sitting on a kitchen table right next to a glass of wine she poured for herself. Her 4-year-old grandchild drank the wine. Doctors say the child’s blood alcohol content was .159.
When an ambulance arrived at McAdoo’s home on Post Oak Lane in Platte County on Dec. 16 of last year, first responders found the child was at first unresponsive and then vomited. “A 4-year-old was distressed. They thought she was possibly having a seizure,” First Assistant Platte County Prosecutor Mark Gibson said. “They were able to smell alcohol in the vomit. They took the child to Children’s Mercy Hospital.”
According to court documents, McAdoo was drinking and left her 4-year-old grandchild alone with wine long enough for the child to drink it. When emergency responders arrived at her home, they say the grandmother struggled to balance and slurred her words.
“I think it’s a real shame,” neighbor Jahi Sadiq-el said. “I think it shows a real lack of responsibility on whoever was in charge of taking care of that kid.”
Medical toxicologists at Children’s Mercy Hospital say less than a cup full of wine can be very problematic to a small child. With mild intoxication a child will be stumbling and confused. “With increasing severity children get more sleepy and can actually develop a coma and become unconscious and not breathe,” Children’s Mercy Medical Toxicologist Adam Algren said.
According to court documents, even though her grandson told her he saw the 4-year-old girl drink the wine, McAdoo did not tell emergency personnel.
Investigators say telling emergency crews that information would have ensured the child was treated properly. “She was in charge of the care, custody and control of the victim,” Gibson said.
Doctors say if a child ingests alcohol they have to monitor them until their body can metabolize the alcohol to make sure they don’t develop breathing issues. They say if parents are going to have alcohol in the home they must be certain children cannot accidentally ingest it.
McAdoo could face up to one year in jail if she is convicted of the child endangerment charge. She pleaded guilty to a driving while under the influence last year.