Three Cape Girardeau children were taken into protective custody Sunday after police said they all tested positive for cocaine.
Brooke Whitener, 31, spent four days in jail after being arrested on New Year's Day when her daughter was rushed to Southeast Hospital with seizures and a high fever, according Cape Girardeau police spokesman Darin Hickey.
A nurse at the hospital called police and the Division of Family Services after the baby's drug screening revealed traces of cocaine, Hickey said.
When police questioned Whitener, she said she believed her daughter found and ingested cocaine while playing outside with Whitener's two older daughters Saturday afternoon. Whitener told police she had a New Year's Eve celebration at her home that night where she and other adults consumed alcoholic beverages and nothing else, according to the probable-cause statement.
Asked if she knew of any drug activity at her party, Whitener grew upset and vehemently denied any claims of drugs in her home.
"No, I would not let drugs just lay around in my house in a candy dish or something," Whitener told police, according to the probable-cause statement.
Whitener confessed to some illicit drug use at a club three months ago but told investigators she was unsure what drugs she had used.
Whitener refused a drug test request from a Division of Family Services agent, as well as a police request to search her home, the statement said.
Candy Mosely, Whitener's mother, told investigators she knew her daughter had used drugs in the past. Mosely also said Whitener had friends who used drugs, according to the probable-cause statement.
Whitener's two older daughters, ages 12 and 14, told investigators that they had seen one of Whitener's friends smoking what they believed to be marijuana from a "brown cigarette," the statement said.
Whitener's two older daughters tested positive for cocaine after a urine test conducted by the Division of Protective Services, Hickey said.
All three children were taken into protective custody, and Whitener was charged with three counts of child endangerment. She faces seven years in prison for each charge.
A bondsman from Hilton Bail Bonds posted Whitener's $20,000 surety bond Wednesday, according to Missouri Case.net. The website didn't list a lawyer for her. She will be arraigned Monday.
The Southeast Missourian could not locate a listed number for Whitener.
Sunday's arrest and its subsequent charges are not the first time Whitener has been in trouble. According to Missouri Case.net, she was sentenced to 10 days in jail for resisting arrest after a 2009 guilty plea.