4 January 2018 | A Hanford, Calif. woman has been jailed on suspicion of second-degree murder after giving birth to a stillborn baby at Adventist Health Hanford hospital on December 30, 2017.
Adora Perez, 29, gave birth at 37 weeks (full term.)
The Fresno Bee reported that medical staff called the coroner and Child Protective Services after the stillborn baby, whose gender was not released, tested positive for methamphetamine.
Hanford police Sgt. Justin Vallin said the case was unusual. “We have cases all the time where CPS (child protective services) is called to the hospital because a live baby was born and tests positive for methamphetamine,” he said, “but we’ve never had a baby born stillborn test positive for methamphetamine.”
Police were able to confirm from family and other witnesses that Perez had used methamphetamine over the course of the entire course of the pregnancy.
“We believe the drug use, the fact the baby tested positive for methamphetamine, and amount of methamphetamine ingested by mother and baby, was the direct cause of death of the baby,” said Hanford police Sgt. Justin Vallin.
Adventist Health Central Valley spokesperson Melinda Morales said that the health system’s policy mandates that nursing staff notify the county coroner’s office of any stillbirth greater than 20 weeks.
Adventist Health Hanford is part of Adventist Health, a not-for-profit health care organization with facilities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. The system is affiliated with the Adventist Church.