The whole concept that you can kill the baby before it’s born, or while it’s being born, but not a moment after, is very strange in the first place.
Also, accidentally killing a baby with meth in your breast milk does not seem like murder. It’s certainly not purposeful, in the way abortion is the purposeful killing of a baby.
More than two-and-a-half years after Daisy Marie Froeba died of methamphetamine toxicity, a Jefferson Parish grand jury charged her mother, Brandie Froeba, with second-degree murder for allegedly breastfeeding the six-week-old infant after taking the drug.
Froeba, 37, of Kenner, was indicted Thursday, according to court records. She had been released from jail in May 2019 on a reduced $75,000 bond. But the court re-instated her original $250,000 bond after the indictment.
An attachment was issued for Froeba’s arrest. She had not surrendered to authorities as of Friday morning, according to court records. Her attorney, Greg Noto, declined to comment.
Daisy was born in June 2018, and was Froeba’s fourth child, according to the Kenner Police Department, which handled the investigation.
The department received a 911 call on the afternoon of Aug. 16, 2018, requesting medical help for the baby because she wasn’t breathing. Paramedics found the baby lying on a bed with a small amount of blood in her mouth, authorities said. Froeba also had blood on her shirt.
Froeba told police she had fallen asleep while nursing Daisy. When she woke and prepared to bathe her daughter, Froeba noticed the baby wasn’t breathing, according to authorities.
Officers said Froeba had slurred speech and seemed lethargic, according to Kenner police. Froeba agreed to take a blood test.
Daisy was taken to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead just before 5 p.m. the same day. Two months later, toxicology tests determined the baby had died of methamphetamine toxicity, Kenner police said.
Froeba’s blood test showed that she, too, had the drug in her system on the day Daisy died, according to authorities.
The youngest of Froeba’s three surviving children tested positive for opiates and marijuana when born in 2016, Kenner police said. Authorities, at the time, gave Froeba information about the dangers of using drugs while pregnant or breastfeeding.
After investigating the case for several months, Kenner detectives booked Froeba on March 8, 2019, with second-degree murder.
I wouldn’t defend this woman. It’s clear she should be punished. Murder is clearly overkill. Some term such as “criminally negligent manslaughter” or “reckless involuntary manslaughter” would seem a lot more appropriate.
However, here’s the thing: our society is filled with drugs and drug users, and the government does nothing about it. In fact, they actively encourage it.
Obviously, this governmental policy of refusing to address the root causes of drug abuse is going to lead to untold tragedy.
Sure, there would still be people using drugs, and there would still be tragedy, if the government was actively working to stop the problem, but it would be a fraction of what we see now.
So crucifying this woman for being a part of a cultural norm that the government itself has fostered seems somewhat unfair. All prosecutions of drug users for drug related offenses seem unfair. The government has no standing in dealing with these matters, because they haven’t attempted to solve the root problem, and have instead encouraged it through legalization, decriminalization, refusal to enforce the border, refusal to do large scale investigations of drug trafficking rings with any consistency – and so on.
This Netflix documentary about the War on Drugs isn’t wrong.
Furthermore, the government has created the conditions by incentivizing the collapse of the family unit, and by driving people into poverty using a barrage of techniques.
Until there is accountability for the people in the government who created this problem, making examples out of users – who are themselves ultimately the victims of a society designed to destroy them – seems fundamentally unfair.