Man charged after allegedly giving infant methadone -

Man charged after allegedly giving infant methadone

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Aundray D. Moss faces the charge of endangering the welfare of a child. Aundray D. Moss faces the charge of endangering the welfare of a child.
Moss with Gage at the ICU. Moss with Gage at the ICU.
Moss with Gage recently. Moss with Gage recently.
By Laura McCallister, Multimedia Producer

By Betsy Webster, News Reporter

A 21-year-old man has been charged after allegedly giving an infant a drug meant for heroin addicts.

Aundray D. Moss faces the charge of endangering the welfare of a child.

According to Avona Wright, Moss' stepmother, things were looking up in the young man's effort to regain custody of his 2-year-old son Gage, who was taken by the state last summer.

"He's been working. He gets visits. They just upped his visits actually to more hours a week. He takes clothes, diapers, buys toys, everything for this child," Wright said.

She said Gage was born addicted to the drug because his mother used while she was pregnant. She said Gage spent two months in the NICU as an infant.

Wright said the mother was instructed to give him smaller and smaller doses of methadone to wean him off of the drug, but that might not have been happening.

She said while the child's mother was in the hospital about a year after Gage was born, she asked Moss to give Gage methadone and he thought it was still part of the weaning process, when in fact that date had long passed.

"She said, 'Hey give him this and this amount,' and he did it because he thought it was still his weaning off dose. He was not aware that he should have already been weaned off," Wright said. "He loves his child. He would never do anything to deliberately hurt him."

Moss was arrested for the methadone incident while at a custody hearing.

Kansas City, MO, police were called to Children's Mercy Hospital on July 26 by a social worker after a 1-year-old boy tested positive for having methadone in his system.

The boy ended up at the hospital because his foster mother took him to the pediatrician the day before because he was agitated, screaming and couldn't sleep for more than 15 minutes. The pediatrician believed the boy was going through acute withdraws and sent the two to Children's Mercy.

“Besides being fussy, uncomfortable, they can have changes in their heart rate and respiratory rate that are potentially dangerous to the child, so you want to watch that very carefully under a controlled medical situation,” said Dr. Steve Lauer with the University of Kansas Hospital's pediatrics unit.

The boy had been placed in the foster mother's care just three days prior. He spent six days in the hospital while staff tried to get his withdraw symptoms under control.

According to court documents, a Jackson County Children's Division investigator said the boy also tested positive for methadone on June 25 of that same year because his biological mother allegedly gave it to him orally.

In February police contacted a former roommate of Moss and the biological mother, as well as someone else who knew them. The former roommate said that while they all shared a home at East 43rd Street and Benton Boulevard  the boy's mother used drugs while pregnant. She would give the boy methadone every morning through a baby syringe - that then progressed to every time he cried and before bed.

Both people who knew Moss and had been around him and the baby said they'd seen him also give the child methadone on multiple occasions. This would make the child calm, go to sleep or pass out.

While being interviewed Moss told police that the child's mother would give him methadone through a syringe once or twice a day. Moss admitted to giving the boy methadone once when they were staying at the Salvation Army. He acknowledged that he knew it was wrong and that he should have come forward.

The boy is now 2 years old.

According to court documents, the mother got the methadone from the Paseo Methadone Clinic.

The prosecutor's office said the case is still being investigated and more charges are possible.

Wright says the mother hasn't been charged because police can't find her. She said police even came to her door on Thursday looking for the mother.

Prosecutors have requested Moss' bond be set at $25,000.

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