A teen mom in Alabama has been arrested after a video showed her convulsing on the ground while allegedly high on synthetic marijuana in front of her 2-year-old son. The video went viral on Facebook, leading to calls to police in Mobile from around the world.
Lauren Brooke Englett, 18, was charged with reckless endangerment and domestic violence, the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office says.
A man seen in the video with Englett, Jaime Jemison, and the woman who recorded the video, Rachel Rikard, are also facing charges, authorities say.
The sheriff’s office began receiving tips about the video on February 23, after it was posted to Facebook. They said the video was “old” and that the state child welfare office was already investigating. Englett was arrested on Monday.
The drug Englett allegedly used, synthetic marijuana, is also known as “Spice” or K-2,” according to the DEA.
The boy has been placed in foster care, authorities say.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Video Shows Englett’s Son Crying as She Writhes Around on the Floor
The viral video, which you can watch above, shows Lauren Brooke Englett writhing around on the floor while her 2-year-old son cries, the sheriff’s office says.
It was recorded on the porch of a home in Theodore, Alabama, according to WISH-TV. After it was posted on Facebook, it spread around the world. The sheriff’s office says they received calls from as far away as Birmingham, Alabama.
“This video has become very viral, it has upset a lot of people and we think it is the responsibility of that mother as well as the other two people in that video that they should be charged,” Lori Myles, the public affairs office for the office, said.
2. The Boy’s Grandmother Called Those Who Reported the Video ‘Haters’ & Said Her Daughter Is Clean
After the video went viral, the sheriff’s office and the Department of Human Resources, which oversees child welfare in Alabama, went to Englett’s home for a check.
The boy was removed from the house on February 23 and put into the care of his grandmother, WISH-TV reports.
The deputies returned on February 27 and found that the boy’s grandmother had given him back to Englett. The child was then removed from the home and placed into foster care, the sheriff’s office told the news station.
The grandmother, Leanne Blackwell-Mcvay, lashed out at angry commenters on the Mobile Sheriff’s Office Facebook page on February 24, the day after the video went viral.
“All of yall are haters and we don’t care what yall have to say or your opinions,” she wrote. “The baby is safe and well taken care of. I have custody of him and I will continue to have. And by the way haters, my daughter is clean now and has been since the video.”
3. Englett Has Been Arrested Two Other Times in Mobile Since November
According to online arrest records, Lauren Englett has been arrested twice since November 2015 by the Mobile Sheriff’s Office.
She was arrested on November 11, 2015, and charged with “harassing communications.” She was then arrested again on January 25, 2015, and charged with theft.
Reporters were outside the courthouse while Englett was taken to jail, and asked her about the video, but she did not respond.
4. Police Are Still Searching for the Man They Say Was Seen in the Video With Englett
The Mobile County Sheriff’s Office is still looking to find Jaime Jemison, 25, the man they say is seen in the video with Englett. He is wanted on a reckless endangerment charge.
The woman accused of recording the video, Rachel Rikard, was arrested Tuesday and also charged with reckless endangerment.
“Rachel Rikard, aspiring videographer, arrested for reckless endangerment. #doingdrugswithnojob,” the sheriff’s office posted on Facebook. She was picked up by deputies Tuesday morning.
She was previously arrested in June 2015 and charged with disorderly conduct and in November 2015 on charges of possession of alcohol by a minor.
5. ‘Spice’ Can Cause ‘Paranoia, Panic Attacks & Giddiness’ the DEA Says
Synthetic marijuana, known as “Spice” and “K-2” is a “mixture of herbs and spices that is typically sprayed with a synthetic compound chemically similar to THC, the psychoactive ingredients in marijuana,” the Drug Enforcement Administration says.
According to the DEA, it can cause “paranoia, panic attacks and giddiness.” It can also cause increased heart rate and increased blood pressure.
It is typically smoked in joints or pipes or made into a tea.