CRESCENT SPRINGS, Ky. - A shocking case reported in Kentucky, where a step-father allegedly gave gin and sweet tea to a toddler, encouraging her to drink the alcohol until she was drunk and unconscious.
Police have identified the suspect as 23-year-old Raymond Jackson of Crescent Springs, KY, a suburb of Cincinnatti, Ohio.
The child passed out and an ambulance was called. Doctors say McKenzie's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit -- for adults.
"She was pretty much almost in a coma. She was not responsive at all," Amanda Jackson told Local 12. Jackson works nights at a nursing home. Her husband watches MacKenzie and their six-month-old son. "Friday night I got off work, went in there, checked on her, nothing. Rubbed her cheek, rubbed her face, tried shaking her arms, nothing. Her eyes were rolled in the back of her head, her breathing was real shallow. Yeah, it terrified me."
At the hospital, Amanda's husband said MacKenzie had been sneaking drinks from his glass containing ice tea and gin. "I told the hospital workers that. They said they were going to get a blood alcohol level on her."
If MacKenzie had weighed 100 pounds, her .259 BAC would equal seven gin and ice tea drinks. But MacKenzie weighs only 29 pounds.
Police say Raymond admitted to encouraging her to drink the mixture. Amanda says she was shocked. "Any adult in their right mind would not let a two-year-old drink alcohol. I think that's enough to where I could have lost my little girl."
Jackson has a past misdemeanor conviction for child abuse in North Carolina involving MacKenzie. MacKenzie also had a broken leg and some other injuries last month and those injuries are now also under investigation as potential child abuse.
MacKenzie is home and recovering after a stay at Children's Hospital in Cincinnati, where she was taken due to the seriousness of the alcohol level.
Amanda says she was given IV fluids and was sleepy for the first day, but the doctors tell her the little girl has suffered no lasting side effects. Police say Jackson was the only adult home at the time of the alleged incident. He's charged with felony Criminal Abuse. A judge set his bond at $10,000 and ordered him to stay away from the child, if he posts the bond.