Mom arrested, baby taken to child protective services after drug raid

Posted at 5:43 PM, Jun 13, 2013
and last updated 2013-06-13 21:21:39-04

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah - A Cottonwood Heights woman is facing drug distribution and child abuse charges after police say they found a baby with a soiled diaper and three bottles of curdled milk in her apartment during a drug raid.

Residents in a Cottonwood Heights neighborhood say they started complaining about a basement apartment weeks ago.

"Honestly it's been extremely stressful, it's been scary. There's been some pretty shady people coming in and out of there," said one neighbor, who didn't want to be identified. "We band together, we stick together and this is something we're not going to tolerate in our neighborhood."

Detectives started investigating, allegedly purchased methamphetamine from 23-year-old Tanisha Jones and gathering enough evidence for a search warrant.

"Meth is the drug we purchased from this house and we did find some quantity of meth in the house," said Sgt. Mark Askerlund, Cottonwood Heights Police Dept.

Police say Jones was not in the apartment on Thursday morning, but while they were serving the search warrant, officers say they heard crying.

Behind a closed bedroom door, they reportedly found a baby, less than a year old, in a portable crib with a soiled diaper and three old bottles with curdled milk.

"The target of our investigation and the mother of the baby had left earlier in the morning for work," Askerlund said.

During the raid, Damon Pitts was arrested on outstanding warrants.

Jones was found in Park City and arrested on drug distribution and child abuse charges. This arrest is the seventh time Jones has been booked into jail. She remains in the Salt Lake County Jail.

The baby was taken to child protective services.