Severn mother on probation after son drank methadone

A Severn mother who, despite a poison center's admonition to get her son to a hospital immediately, waited until her child began having a seizure from sipping his father's methadone, was placed on three years' probation Friday.

Kimberly Brooks, 28, feared a huge hospital bill and so waited to see if the condition of her five-year-old son, who had vomited, would improve — a decision that nearly cost the child his life last Sept. 4, Anne Arundel County prosecutor Sandra Howell told Circuit Court Judge Paul A. Hackner. Brooks pleaded guilty to child neglect and two related charges. Her attorney, assistant public defender Karl Gordon, said he did not think his client understood at the time how dire her son's situation was.

Hackner ordered a suspended 18-month jail term, saying in retrospect, Brooks made poor decisions, but the boy's condition deteriorated so fast that in less than an hour and a half he went from barely showing symptoms to not breathing when paramedics arrived.

Brooks' husband, Paul Kristopher Brooks Sr., who bought an open cup of methadone illegally in Baltimore with the boy in his car, is serving 18 months in jail on child neglect, drug and related convictions for his role in leaving drugs and a weapon where his son could have access. The child has been living with his maternal grandmother in Glen Burnie, with Kimberly Brooks visiting.

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