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Charges Dropped Against Woman Arrested for Drinking While Breastfeeding

 

(Pulse) -- A 28-year-old woman who was arrested in a Conway, Arkansas, restaurant for drinking while breastfeeding had child endangerment charges against her dropped last week because officials said there wasn't enough evidence that she'd drunk too much to care for her six-month-old baby.

The woman, Tasha Adams, insists she only had one beer with dinner and another afterward, telling ABC News' 20/20, "I was sober enough to breastfeed my kid." Adams went to the restaurant with her parents after the funeral of a family friend, and she brought the baby along because she was still nursing. The trouble began when off-duty waitress Jackie Conners showed up for a staff meeting and claims she saw Adams drinking not beer, but liquor and breastfeeding.

She told ABC, "There were several drinks in front of her . . . I watched the bartender make them, looked like Long Islands. But regardless if it was that or not, then it was strong liquor that was in those glasses." Conners was told the manager had already decided not to stop serving Adams, so she called the police. Adams says, "They said, 'Ma'am, we've got a report that you were drinking alcohol while breastfeeding.' I said, 'OK, I didn't know that was illegal.'"

In fact, Arkansas law says nothing about the issue, but police arrested her for endangering the welfare of a child. Ob-gyn Dr. Jennifer Ashton told 20/20 there's not much research on drinking while nursing and it's unclear how much alcohol gets into the mother's milk.

She said, "Conventional wisdom will say . . . moderate consumption, which really means once and a while to consume a drink, probably will not do any harm for the baby. But we have to remember that alcohol is a toxin. It's especially toxic to the newborn's brain, to the developing brain." Conners was fired the next week, but says she'd do the same thing again, stating, "that baby can't speak up for itself."

 

 

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