Baby chokes on pipe screen in Florida, parents charged with neglect



Here’s another argument for giving up that old metal-screen pipe and moving on to a nice piece of blown glass: parents in Bradenton, Florida are being charged with child neglect after their baby choked on their pipe screen according to the Miami Herald

Last Sunday, James Dunlap and Megan Johnson, both 24, were enjoying a relaxing day around the house, smoking a few bowls and generally enjoying being a family. At some point, Dunlap decided that his metal screen in his pipe was too dirty, so he replaced it with a new, clean one and left the old one sitting around (hopefully not for resin hits later, but why else would you save a screen?).
After a morning bath for the baby, Johnson laid the child down on the couch where it somehow grabbed Dunlap’s used metal screen and (like babies will do) put it in it’s mouth and subsequently swallowed it. It didn’t take long before the baby began to choke on the screen, vomiting to unsuccessfully dislodge it.
The sad thing is that I’m sure the parents suffered enough. Seeing your child in agony like that is probably worse than any punishment the courts could dole out – with the exception of taking your child away from you. Sadly, that’s exactly what happened when both Dunlap and Johnson were arrested Wednesday.
Not that we condone the stupidity of leaving out pot byproducts around mouthy babies, but had it been a hot dog chunk, a toy fragment or even a wine cork the parents probably wouldn’t be seeing these charges filed against them. Here’s hoping that the judge in the case makes the same conclusion – though sadly, this is Florida and that probably won’t be the case.