A babysitter allegedly fed an infant wine, causing the baby’s blood-alcohol level to exceed four times the legal limit for an adult, while the baby’s mother was away in a family emergency.
Carrollton police Sgt. Tony Johnson said officers are searching for Tammy Denice Truitt, 40, of Carrollton on charges of first degree cruelty to children and reckless conduct for giving the 9-month-old baby boy alcohol.
Johnson said Truitt was babysitting four children, ages 9, 7, 5 and 3, along with the 9-month-old baby on Tuesday after the children’s mother left for Atlanta on a family emergency around 4 p.m.
When the children’s grandmother arrived at the house on Martin Luther King Street around 9 p.m. to pick up the three boys and one girl, she found the baby laying in what appeared to be a lifeless state, not responding, according to police. The infant was then taken to the emergency room at Tanner Medical Center/Carrollton.
Police said as doctors were checking the baby, and that blood tests revealed the infant had a blood-alcohol content of .33, which is considered a life-threatening condition. Doctors at Tanner Medical Center treated the baby with fluids before the infant was transferred to Scottish Rite hospital in Atlanta for further treatment, according to authorities.
Johnson said none of the other children were given alcohol during the five hours Truitt was babysitting. Investigators learned through interviews that the baby had consumed wine. Police are still investigating how Truitt allegedly fed the baby the wine and why.
The children’s mother had known Truitt, but police said she was not the family’s regular babysitter.
Johnson said the baby was released from Scottish Rite hospital on Wednesday and is doing fine.
“It is a miracle that the child did not die from alcohol poisoning, considering how little the baby’s body is, to be able to stand that amount of alcohol in his system,” he said. “An adult can be charged for DUI with a blood alcohol level of .08. A lot of adults can’t function at .33. The child could have died.”
Johnson said this was the first alcohol-related case he has investigated involving a child as young as 9 months old in Carrollton.
Police said officers have not been able to locate Truitt, who was last seen at the family’s house. Truitt is described as a black female, 5-feet-7 inches tall and approximately 165 pounds, with short black hair and brown eyes.
Anyone with any information on the whereabouts of Truitt can contact Sgt. Tony Johnson at the Carrollton Police Department at 770-834-4451 or call Crime Stoppers at 770-838-STOP. All callers can remain anonymous, and a cash reward is offered for information leading to an arrest.