Tuesday, April 23 2013, 12:56 PM CDT
Deputies arrest dad after daughter eats meth
MEDFORD, Ore. -- Jackson County Sheriff officials say a 6-year-old girl told a deputy that she ate meth.
The investigation started when a Jackson County Sheriff's deputy responded to a number of calls about a man acting strangely at Burger King, 459 S. Valley View Road in Ashland.
When the deputy arrived, the suspect had already left. Officials learned that the man was headed north on Interstate 5, according to a press release from the Jackson County Sheriff's Office.
The deputy found the vehicle on the freeway and noted that the driver was exceeding the posted speed limit. At that time, the deputy initiated a traffic stop at Exit 48 in Rogue River.
When making contact with the driver, the deputy noticed the man -- 28-year-old Elijah Benbow of Seattle -- was shaking badly, fidgeting and couldn't stop moving, according to the press release.
Based on his training and experience, the deputy believed the man was under the influence of intoxicants.
At this time, the deputy noticed that the suspect was not alone in the car -- his 6-year-old daughter was in the backseat.
The deputy had the suspect step out of the car and speak to him away from his daughter, according to the press release.
At this time, the man told the deputy his daughter had taken some money and hid it from him and this was why he was acting strangely in the Burger King parking lot.
The deputy got permission from the man to speak to his daughter.
During the conservation, the girl told the deputy she ate something that looked like a rock and was "sort of gray."
After talking to the child, the deputy placed Benbow in handcuffs and advised him on his Miranda Rights, according to the press release.
The deputy got permission to search the car. When he searched the vehicle he found 5.37 grams of methamphetamine.
The girl identified the methamphetamine as the substance she ate. The deputy immediately called for medical assistance.
Benbow was given a field sobriety test; officials say he failed.
The deputy arrested Benbow on the suspicion child neglect, unlawful possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence and reckless endangering.
He has been taken to the Jackson County jail and is being held on $38,000 bail.
The child was treated at an area hospital. She has been released and was place in foster care.