Parents charged after infant found unresponsive

Published 12:08 am Tuesday, July 11, 2023

CHINA GROVE — A man and woman were arrested last week after their 11-month-old child was found unresponsive. Ingestion of fentanyl is one possibility that authorities are investigating since police were advised the drug was in the home.

Aaron Lee Brown, 34, and Hannah Michelle Shoemaker, 32, were arrested on July 7 and charged with felony child abuse causing serious physical injury, possession of a schedule-II controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. Brown’s bond was set at $42,500. Shoemaker’s bond was set at $32,500.

According to reports from the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were sent on July 2 to a call in the 200 block of Brown Road at 9:06 a.m. for reports of an unresponsive child.

Upon arrival, first responders transported the child to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte for treatment. Initially, it was reported to investigators that the child could have possibly ingested a poison used to eliminate mice.

However, after further questioning and the revelation that deputies were seeking a search warrant for the home, Brown reportedly said there was a small amount of fentanyl inside a room where he claimed the child was not allowed to go.

“Based off what the father told them about there being fentanyl in the house, our investigators (consider) it possible the child could have (ingested) fentanyl,” a Rowan County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson said. But that information has not been confirmed.

The child was reported to be ready to be released from the hospital Monday night. The incident remains under investigation.