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LAWRENCE, Mass. — Video showing 2-year-old child screaming as her mom lays limp in the toy aisle at a Lawrence, Mass., store will likely be used as evidence in charges of a New Hampshire woman.

In the video, the 2-year-old girl is screaming and tugging at her mother’s limp body Sunday morning at a Family Dollar. The person taking the video can be heard describing the mother’s eyes rolling to the back of her head. Soon, first responders arrive. Police said it took two doses of Narcan to revive her.


The video is now a key piece of evidence in charging the Salem, N.H., mother with child endangerment. The little girl in the video is in protective custody with the Department of Children and Families.

Police in Lawrence said that while the video is shocking, it is all too common.

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“It’s very disturbing to see someone obviously in the matter of addiction where it overtakes someone where they’re not able to take care of their child, leaves their child vulnerable,” said Lawrence police Chief James Fitzpatrick.

Police said while they wish the person taking the video had helped the frantic child, the clip is evidence for a child endangerment charge. Combined with drug paraphernalia found in the woman’s bag, straws and baggies with drug residue, they believe she had overdosed on an oral version of heroin or an opiate-based narcotic like fentanyl.

Police said they hope sharing this video will alert people to the horrific consequences of drug use. They said it’s something not seen by the public every day, but ever present to first responders. Fitzpatrick estimates that children are present in about 10 percent of drug situations they respond to.

“They can see firsthand the power of the narcotic and fentanyl. She’s lucky to be alive and you see someone in the throes of addiction like that, and what they’re willing to sacrifice,” said Fitzpatrick.

Police said no other children are in the care of that woman, and they expect her to be charged by the end of the week.

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