Rochester parent charged for child ingesting fentanyl to be released if she follows chemical assessment
Citing a concern for the woman and her child, a district judge pushed for the woman to be released into a treatment program while the child stays with a family member.
ROCHESTER — A 23-year-old Rochester woman will be released from jail if she follows the recommendations of a chemical dependency assessment, a district judge ordered during a Tuesday March 28, 2023, hearing in Olmsted County District Court.
Rahmo Yussuf Salah is facing one count of endangering a child for her daughter allegedly ingesting a pill containing fentanyl , according to an amended criminal complaint. Salah was initially facing an additional charge of felony fifth-degree drug possession.
District Judge Lisa Hayne expressed concern for the safety of Salah and her child, citing the fact that Salah had overdosed on two different occasions in the last five months and needed to be revived by Narcan, a medicine used to temporarily reduce the effects of opioid use.
"And yet you're still using fentanyl," Hayne said in court.
Hayne ordered Salah be held until a chemical assessment is completed by Salah or she sign a release to allow the court to look at a previous assessment. Salah would be released into the custody of whatever treatment recommendation that assessment dictated.
Salah was also ordered to have no contact with her daughter, not use alcohol or illegal substances and to obtain a baseline urine analysis.
Her daughter is currently being taken care of by the child's grandmother at a different address than where Salah would be living, Salah's public defender, Abbey Boe, said in court.
Hayne will also allow Salah, who has been a Rochester residence for the last five years, to be released on a $20,000 bail or bond with no conditions, though that is unlikely as Salah is currently unemployed, she told the court through an interpreter.
Assistant Olmsted County Attorney Hamid Ali had argued for a $15,000 unconditional bail or bond or for Salah to be released on her own recognizance, provided she submit to random drug testing.
Her next court appearance is scheduled for April 11, 2023.
According to the criminal complaint:
Officers with the Rochester Police Department responded to an overdose call involving a 1-year-old girl at a residence on the 3000 block of Rose Heights Drive Southeast.
A dispatcher told officers that the child was not breathing, though an officer confirmed the girl was breathing before an ambulance arrived.
While the child was receiving medical treatment, the girl's mother, Salah, told police that her daughter took a fentanyl pill that she had in her purse.
An officer observed bundles of burnt tinfoil in Salah's purse as she searched for her identification and blue pill stamped as "M30" was found on the floor. These pills are known to potentially be counterfeit Percocet pills that contain fentanyl.
A field test of the pill came back inconclusive but Salah told an officer that they were fentanyl pills, and she had ingested them earlier that day.
She gave a statement to law enforcement following her arrest and said that she was in the bathroom with her daughter when she took half of a fentanyl pill and placed the other half in her purse.
"She then could not find the other half of the pill and noticed that her daughter was unable to stand or walk and kept rubbing her eyes," part of the complaint reads.