OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – A nine-month pregnant woman was arrested over the weekend for child abuse after officers determined she was driving under the influence.
“It’s not uncommon to see a pregnant person go to jail,” said Sgt. Dillon Quirk of the Oklahoma City Police Department. “However, it is very disheartening when that is the case.”
OCPD pulled over Alexis Alexander around 1:45 a.m. Saturday morning for driving without lights and driving through a red light near South Meridian Ave. and West Reno Ave.
The arresting officer said Alexander was the sole occupant of the vehicle and had red, watery eyes, would “space out” while speaking, and self-admitted to smoking a blunt about two hours prior.
The police report said the officer could tell immediately she was pregnant and when he asked when her baby was due, she said “February 1st.”
The report said Alexander was taken to the hospital for medical clearance before being taken to jail.
Among the complaints filed against her by OCPD were driving under the influence and child abuse.
Criminal defense attorney James Wirth of Wirth Law Office explained to KFOR that since 2020, an Oklahoman woman can face abuse charges for taking drugs while pregnant.
“Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals decided in September of 2020 to interpret ‘child’ to include an unborn child,” he said.
“From the prosecutor’s point of view, they’re going to say that she intentionally took in that narcotic knowing that it would go through her system and be transferred to her unborn child,” he continued. “They’re saying that child is protected under child abuse law, even though it’s not born. So, it could be interpreted as the same as giving it to a born child.”
OCPD said the Oklahoma County district attorney’s office will ultimately determine what charges Alexander will face.