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Sarah Stephens

Citrus Heights mother accused of giving baby a fatal drug overdose

Published: Friday, Aug. 9, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 1B
Last Modified: Monday, Aug. 12, 2013 - 8:31 am

A 32-year-old woman is accused of giving her 8-month-old baby boy a fatal drug overdose in Citrus Heights, according to authorities.

On Wednesday night, Citrus Heights police booked Sarah Ann Stephens of Sacramento into the Sacramento County Main Jail on suspicion of murder and child endangerment, according to authorities.

In September 2012, Citrus Heights police went to an apartment in the 7000 block of Auburn Boulevard after fire paramedics responded to a 911 call reporting an unresponsive infant.

Officers found the baby dead but detected no immediate signs of foul play, according to a Police Department news release.

Toxicology reports, however, would later show that the baby died of an apparent drug overdose.

In their investigation, police found that Stephens "knowingly and without regard for the infant's health, administered controlled substances to the infant ultimately causing his death," according to the news release.

Citrus Heights police spokesman Officer Bryan Fritsch said the controlled substance was prescription medication. He declined to identify the medication or say whether it was prescribed for the infant or someone else.

Fritsch said Stephens has one older child, but police were not releasing information on the status of that child.

Assisting police in the investigation were the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office and its crime lab, the county Coroner's Office, Child Protective Services and medical professionals.

Call The Bee's Kim Minugh, (916) 321-1038. Follow her on Twitter @kim_minugh.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

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