MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Northfield, Minn. woman was arrested after she allegedly was smoking methamphetamine while her baby was sleeping in a bathtub, according to police.
Police say they were contacted by a Rice County social worker about a child protection issue. The social worker said a woman called her, saying she took a 1-year-old baby from a house in Faribault Tuesday that belonged to 23-year-old Amanda Rae Hejl.
The woman said she found the baby sleeping in the bathtub while methamphetamine was being used at the residence.
“It’s not a positive environment to have a 14-month-old in,” said Faribault Police Chief Dan Collins.
Police and the social worker met with the woman, who said she went to Hejl’s residence and when she walked in, she noticed the room was full of “meth smoke.” She said the place was “filthy.”
“Not only had the child been left in a poor place, but the condition of the child indicated the child hadn’t been cared for properly,” said Collins.
The woman said she tried to open a window to ventilate the apartment but the people inside the home refused. She said she didn’t see Hejl use meth while she was there.
When she walked into the bathroom, she saw the baby sleeping in the bathtub and said the room was full of smoke. She told Hejl she needed to leave with the child and after a while, Hejl agreed to let her watch the toddler for the night.
The woman said the baby’s clothes and car seat were full of “meth smoke.”
The child was taken into protective custody.
Hejl contacted police to find out why her baby was taken and said she wanted her back.
After meeting with police, Hejl said she was staying at the Faribault apartment for three or four days and didn’t have a ride back to her residence in Northfield so had no choice but to sleep on the couch, with her child sleeping on the floor.
She admitted she put the baby in the bathtub to sleep around 9 or 10 p.m. and left the apartment. She said when she returned, a woman was there who said she wanted to watch her child for the evening. The woman then left with her child around 1:30 a.m.
Hejl denied ever smoking methamphetamine but later admitted the she and her friends used it earlier in the evening, while her baby was in the bathtub.
She admitted she didn’t take any precautions to ensure the child wouldn’t turn the water on in the tub and said the bathtub had a large shower curtain in it.
Hejl was arrested and charged for endangerment of a child, neglect of a child and permitting a child to be exposed to meth.