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Woman accused of endangering child could have daughter taken away

Custody determinations usually occur in court, but for one mother in Ohio, whatever that determination may have been, it will likely change because of an incident that occurred involving her 8-year-old daughter.

A 37-year-old woman from Medway, Ohio, will likely be charged with operating a vehicle impaired. Other charges may include failure to control and child endangerment. The accusations and pending charges came after she had crashed her vehicle into a utility pole, causing the vehicle to flip and land on its top. Her 8-year-old daughter was a passenger in the vehicle, and as a result of the accident was released to the custody of her father.

According to the authorities, the mother was under the influence of prescription drugs at the time of the accident. Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers reported to the scene to find the vehicle upside-down with several utility lines on the ground in the area.

The 8-year-old was taken to a nearby hospital and treated for minor injuries. She was expected to be released into the custody of her father. The mother was not seriously harmed in the accident.

If this mother is accused and convicted of child endangerment because of the accident, she may have her parental rights taken away from her. This could mean that she will not be allowed to see her child or it could also mean that she will be required to pay child support until the girl is of age.

According to statistics, more Americans are taking prescription drugs. A 2010 Center for Disease Control and Prevention report indicated that the last decade has seen an increase in the number of individuals who take at least one prescription drug: that number rose from 44 to 48 percent of Americans.

It is not known if the mother and the father live together or are married or divorced. If the parents don't live together, then it would be in both of their interests, for different reasons, to consult with experienced family law attorneys, who can answer questions about revisiting custody arrangements.

Source: Dayton Daily News, "Medway mother faces OVI, child endangering in crash," Andy Sedlak, Jan. 16, 2012

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