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Two arrested for assaulting their children

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By Susan Sharp

Last week, two mothers were arrested for assaulting their unborn children.

The arrests, while not related, come after months of joint investigation between the Campbell County Sheriff’s Department and the Department of Children’s Services.

Johanna Ogg and Amanda Lynn Lyttle were arrested within hours of each other last week. Both were charged with aggravated assault.

Ogg, 33, 444 Davenport Road, LaFollette, was arrested last Wednesday.

She gave birth to a son in Nov. 2012. After the child was born he tested positive for benzodiazepines, oxycodone and oxymorphone, according  to CCSD Det. Ricky Jeffers. The baby boy was placed in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) shortly after birth. He remained there for four weeks. Among the medical problems the infant faced was being small for his gestational age and drug exposure. He also suffered from neonatal abstinence syndrome, Jeffers said.  NAS is a group of symptoms that present in an infant after being born to a mother who routinely abused drugs, according  to children’s hospital. A child suffering from NAS can suffer from excessive crying, poor feeding habits, sweating, vomiting and other symptoms related to drug withdrawals.

In this case, medication was required to wean the child from the pain and anxiety medications Ogg had ingested during her pregnancy. She later admitted she had taken a multitude of drugs during her pregnancy.

Lyttle is a repeat offender.

This is the second drug-addicted child she has given birth to, Jeffers said.

In July 2012, she prematurely gave birth to a daughter addicted to morphine. The baby remained in the NICU  for three weeks, court records indicate. The infant was diagnosed with drug exposure, NAS and anemia, the arrest warrant said. Lyttle admitted to hospital staff she had used 50 to 100 milligrams of morphine daily during her pregnancy. She did so intravenously.

Lyttle further told the staff she had occasionally used roxicodone intravenously while pregnant.

“We are charging them based on the pain and suffering the babies endured after birth,” Jeffers said. “It takes a while to put these cases together because of the nature of the cases.”

Jeffers and prosecutors chose to charge Ogg and Lyttle with aggravated assault because that is the most fitting charge, he said.

“We are disappointed that these cases are becoming more frequent,” said Sheriff Robbie Goins. “These are very time intensive to investigate. But by making that investment on  the front end we are preparing to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.”

Both children have been released from the hospital and DCS is still involved, according to Jeffers.