ST. GEORGE — A St. George mother was arrested for child endangerment Wednesday after three of her four young children allegedly tested positive for methamphetamine.
On March 8, St. George Police detectives were assigned to follow up on a child abuse case after receiving a tip from the Division of Child and Family Services that a mother had been using methamphetamine around her children in the family’s RV on the 2700 East block of 350 North, according to a probable cause statement filed by St. George Police in support of the arrest.
The mother, identified as 35-year-old Britnie Alice Leonard, was questioned by police after hair samples were taken from her four children and three of the children tested positive for meth, the arresting officer wrote in the sworn statement. Leonard subsequently denied smoking meth around her children.
During the investigation, authorities reportedly listened to incriminating statements made during jail phone recordings between Britnie Leonard and her husband, 31-year-old Dennis Leonard, who was arrested Feb. 5 and incarcerated at Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility for aggravated assault, the report states.
In the recordings, Dennis Leonard allegedly admitted that he and his wife had smoked meth around the couple’s children, according to the statement. During the conversation, Britnie Leonard reportedly tells Dennis Leonard she did not smoke meth around the kids but talks about having knowledge that her husband and others did.
When Dennis Leonard was interviewed at the jail March 19 by police, he allegedly admitted that he had used meth in the couple’s RV where he lived with his wife and children and that he put “up blankets to prevent the smoke from getting to his kids,” the officer wrote.
Britnie Leonard was arrested Wednesday and booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.
The Washington County Attorney’s Office filed an information in 5th District Court accusing Britnie Leonard of four third-degree felony counts of endangerment of a child. She is scheduled to appear before 5th District Judge John Walton Thursday afternoon for her initial appearance.
A third-degree felony count of child endangerment was added to Dennis Leonard’s charges Monday.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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