An Ohio city shared shocking images of a man and woman who had overdosed in their car while a 4-year-old boy sat in the backseat.
James Acord was driving a Ford Explorer with West Virginia registration behind a school bus when he allowed his car to drift into an angle on the street.
East Liverpool police officer Kevin Thompson approached the vehicle and 47-year-old Acord, whose speech was unintelligible and “had pin point pupils” told him that he was taking passenger Rhonda Pasek to the hospital, Thompson wrote in the police report.
After Acord tried to shift the car back into drive, Thompson said he reached in and turned off the vehicle, then took the keys.
At that point, he noticed the 4-year-old boy in the backseat, who was later identified as Pasek’s son.
Pasek, 50, was already unconscious and turning blue and Acord lost consciousness during the stop. EMS responders were able to revive both with Narcan, which is used to reverse opiate overdoses, and the adults were taken to the hospital, according to the police report.
Acord was charged with operating a vehicle impaired, endangering a child and slowing in a roadway and Pasek was charged with endangering a child, not wearing a seatbelt and public intoxication.
The child was taken back to the police department where Columbiana County Children’s Services responded.
“We feel it necessary to show the other side of this horrible drug. We feel we need to be a voice for the children caught up in this horrible mess. This child can’t speak for himself but we are hopeful his story can convince another user to think twice about injecting this poison while having a child in their custody,” the city wrote on Facebook, along with two photos of the unconscious couple and the alert boy.
“We are well aware that some may be offended by these images and for that we are truly sorry, but it is time that the non drug using public sees what we are now dealing with on a daily basis. The poison known as heroin has taken a strong grip on many communities not just ours, the difference is we are willing to fight this problem until it’s gone and if that means we offend a few people along the way we are prepared to deal with that.”