- Brady Lynden Wearn,18, and Mary Catherine Bedenbaugh,17, were charged with their baby’s death.
- Toxicology reports showed that the baby had “measurable levels” of cocaine in the body.
- Both parents also tested positive for cocaine, fentanyl, and marijuana during a drug screen.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The parents of a four-month-old South Carolina infant who died in May have been charged with homicide by child abuse and unlawful conduct toward a child after cocaine was found in the baby’s body and feeding bottles, authorities have revealed.
Brady Wearn, 18, and Mary Bedenbaugh, 17, were arrested Wednesday following an investigation into the baby’s death.
“These are very difficult and time-consuming cases that investigators have to sort through, and we have to wait for testing on items, which takes a few weeks. This is exactly why we take drug enforcement so seriously,” Newberry County Sheriff Lee Foster said in a statement.
First responders were called to the suspects’ home in Prosperity, South Carolina, on May 2, where the infant was found unresponsive and not breathing, according to the Newberry County Sheriff’s Office.
The child, whose name and gender have not been released, was transported to Newberry Hospital and was later pronounced dead.
During the initial investigation, Toxicology reports showed that the baby had “measurable levels” of cocaine in the body, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Further toxicology tests found cocaine in the infant’s feeding bottles. As a result, both parents submitted to a drug screen, which tested positive for cocaine, fentanyl, and marijuana. Following the tests and autopsy, the infant’s death was ruled as “sudden unexpected infant death associated with recent cocaine ingestion.”
The parents were denied bond in a recent court appearance, according to The New York Daily News. They are both being held at the Newberry County Detention Center.
Coroner Kneece added: “These cases are very difficult and emotional from the start with an infant being involved. It takes multiple agency cooperation from the beginning. I am very proud of the dedication of all agencies involved and how effortless it is was for everyone to work together.”