DELAND, Fla. -- It was a rap on a car window that that very well may have saved a baby's life, thanks to an astute Volusia County Sheriff's deputy, who was in the right place at the right time and for the right reason.
Despite fogged-up windows and the glare of overhead lights at 3:15 in the morning on a Tuesday in the Circle K convenience store parking lot, 2095 E. New York Ave., it was rapping on the door with her extended baton that woke the baby up crying and sweating profusely. The 8-month-old hungry baby's first instinct was to reach for her bottle -- which sadly, was empty, of course. And almost immediately, it became obvious from the putrid smell that the baby's diaper had not been changed for quite some time, contents from within leaking through the soggy bunched up ends. The crying baby was dirty with no signs she had been washed at all.
And while this innocent baby girl woke on her own from the deputy's rapping on the glass window, she literally had to shake the adults slumped in the front seat to get them to wake up.
The mother was semi-conscious in the front seat, unable to put more than a sentence or two in a coherent way in a hushed voice. She had trouble spelling out her own name due to impairment. A search of her person revealed a clear plastic baggie with white residue in her left front pocket. It tested positive for opiates.The man next to her was just as incoherent. With other deputies now on-scene, was told to exit the car.
A search revealed a clear plastic baggie with white residue in her left front pocket. Deputy Lewis tested the residue in the baggie utilizing a NARK #22 test kit, which yielded a presumptive positive for the presence of opiates. The defendant was subsequently charged with possession of opiates and later transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail.
Because the male driver had full control of the vehicle and the key in the ignition, Deputy Lewis placed him under arrest for driving while license suspended. As he exited the vehicle, deputies observed track marks on this inner arms indicating intravenous drug use. A search revealed a spent syringe in his left front pocket.
Lewis tested the syringe utilizing a NARK #22 test kit, which yielded a presumptive positive for the presence of opiates. He was subsequently charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and later transported to the jail.
The child was placed into the care of the Department of Children and Families.