Buckhannon woman arrested for child neglect, possession of fentanyl following overdose

BUCKHANNON – An Upshur County woman was arrested over the weekend after allegedly possessing fentanyl within reach of five children.

Gina Jenkins, 27, of Buckhannon, was arrested for child neglect creating risk of injury and possession of fentanyl, both felonies.

According to the criminal complaint in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s Office filed by investigating officer Trooper First Class P.J. Robinette with the Buckhannon detachment of the West Virginia State Police, on Saturday, July 3, at 5:21 p.m., Robinette arrived at Valley Green Drive, in reference to an overdose call. Upon arrival Robinette noted Upshur County EMS and city police were already on scene. One of the officers, Cpl. Marshall O’Connor with the Buckhannon Police Department, was holding a straw and “a paper packaging commonly referred to as a stamp,” the report says.

Jenkins’s boyfriend had given police the straw and stamp, saying he found Jenkins, his girlfriend, “in and out of consciousness” in the upstairs bedroom, according to the file. The boyfriend reportedly told police that when he found Jenkins, she was allegedly holding the stamp and straw in her hand.

When Robinette walked up the stairs, he saw Upshur EMS was actively caring for the woman.

Some time after, Jenkins became alert and coherent and signed a refusal for treatment with EMS. When Robinette asked her what happened, Jenkins told police she “took a little bit,” because she was in pain, according to the file.

“I didn’t know what it was, I thought it was pain relief,” Jenkins told police; she said she found the substance on her bedroom dresser and that it looked like Goody’s headache powder lying on aluminum foil, the report says.

Upon further investigation, Robinette discovered Jenkins’s bedroom door could only be locked from the inside and that, as a result, her five children – ages seven, five, three, three and one – could potentially enter her bedroom where the substance was located, according to the complaint.

“The door in question appeared to only be able to lock from the inside,” Robinette wrote, noting that four out of the five children “could easily access her bedroom by simply turning the doorknob.”

When police searched Jenkins’s bedroom, they allegedly found a clear plastic bag containing a green leafy substance with the odor and appearance of marijuana on the windowsill and numerous opened paper ‘packagings’ in her top dresser drawer containing a substance that looked the same as the substance allegedly found in her hand, the report says.

Robinette then looked under Jenkin’s mattress, where he allegedly found two unopened paper packages which were allegedly “among numerous opened paper packages and aluminum foil strips” with white, powdery residue on them inside a blue plastic American Spirits tobacco bag. When Robinette field tested one of the unopened packages, it tested positive for methamphetamine and fentanyl, according to the file.

Bail was set at $20,000 cash only, and Jenkins remained incarcerated as of Wednesday.

The penalty for child neglect creating risk of injury is a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $3,000, confinement in the state penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five years or both. The penalty for possession of fentanyl is confinement in a state prison for not less than two nor more than 10 years.

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