Joyce and Reyes Pill Mill Attorney Says Prescription Drug Abuse Poses Serious Dangers to Children of Addicts
Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) April 28, 2014 - The effects of Florida’s pill mills on adults are widely understood, but their effects on children are only recently becoming more clear.
A major investigation by the Miami Herald, titled “Innocents Lost,” has uncovered serious shortcomings in the way the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) protects children vulnerable to abuse and neglect, as well as how it tabulates and reports data on deaths of those children. One report from the investigation exposes the deaths of many children of drug-addicted parents – whether due to abuse, neglect or the prescription drugs themselves.
Tampa pill mill attorney Robert Joyce says the story serves as an important and sobering reminder of the dangers of drugs and pill mills.
“The evidence shows dozens of child deaths could have been prevented if greater weight had been placed on the dangers of prescription drug abuse,” Mr. Joyce says. “Narcotic painkillers such as oxycodone are very powerful drugs, and someone addicted to them is not going to be able to properly care for children and keep them safe. From this report, it’s painfully clear that many children’s deaths can be attributed to neglect and, tragically, to abuse of the drugs by the children. What makes it worse is that our government failed not only to regulate pill mills in a timely manner, but also to appropriately protect children.”
According to the Miami Herald, 123 children have died since 2008 after DCF had knowledge that one or both parents were abusing prescription medications. More than 85 percent of them were under age 3.
Jaiden Washpun's mother was arrested for doctor-shopping the day before he was born. He left the womb weighing 2 pounds, 4 ounces, and carrying opiates, benzodiazepines and marijuana in his blood. Less than four months later, authorities found him unresponsive on a motel room bed where, police say, Washpun’s mother and her boyfriend had set up shop as drug dealers.
Seth Mixon, a Hillsborough County boy, lived long enough to become a user of his mother's prescription Xanax, according to the DCF. The department received a total of 16 calls about Seth to its hotline, complaining about his mother's drug abuse and neglect of the boy. On February 12, 2010, at age 13, he was found dead in his bed of a drug overdose.
"FLorida has made a lot of progress in this area. I hope this report leads to meaningful reforms at DCF as well,” Mr. Joyce adds.
Joyce and Reyes Law Firm, P.A.
307 S Hyde Park Ave
Tampa, FL 33606
View Larger Map
- Family files wrongful death lawsuit over Tampa Bay motorcyclist’s death
The family of Keith Williamson, a motorcyclist who was killed in a crash, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) and the Clearwater Police Department. The crash involved a high-speed chase on the Courtney Campbell Causeway Bridge in the Tampa Bay area. Williamson was riding at the front of a […]
- Settlement reached in Florida brain injury case
All parties have reached a settlement in a lawsuit filed by the families of two teenage girls who suffered brain injuries after a parasailing accident at a Florida beach resort. Alexis Fairchild and Sidney Good were both 17 and vacationing in Florida in 2013 when their parasail broke loose from a motorboat, causing them to […]
- Florida distracted driving law may be strengthened
If a series of bills passes in Florida state legislature, the state’s texting while driving laws may be strengthened. A state senator and two state representatives have filed bills that would make texting while driving a primary offense, add penalties when a fatal crash occurs because of a driver using a cell phone, and ban […]
- Florida woman files brain injury lawsuit after fall from theme park ride
According to a brain injury lawsuit filed by a Florida woman, inadequate safety measures caused her headfirst fall from a ride at Dollywood. Tedi Brown, a resident of Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, suffered severe injuries and a permanent disability after she fell from the Waltzing Swinger ride at the theme park in December 2013, according […]
- Florida pill mill conspirator sentenced
A man who pleaded guilty to oxycodone-related crimes was sentenced in federal court to a prison sentence of eight years and six months. At the December 2014 sentencing, Krystopher Adrian Legg apologized for his actions. In 2012, he pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the distribution of oxycodone and offered testimony in related trials. As […]