It’s the photo seen all over the world. Two adults overdosed, passed out on drugs, in the front seat of a car as a child looks on. The woman in the photo, the child’s grandmother faced a judge today in East Liverpool and will spend the next six months behind bars. Rhonda Pasek was given the maximum sentence. Pasek plead “no contest” to child endangerment, public intoxication, and a seat belt violation.
The little boy is now in the custody of relatives in South Carolina. Pasek had just gotten custody of him in July.
The community is now reacting to her sentence. Everyone we spoke to today was very aware of the photo and woman we was talking about.
“I think the sentence is fair,” said Jeff Phillips. “I don’t think she is fit to be a mother, and I don’t think she should have a child under her roof.”
“The real person that got punished was that little boy though. That’s for sure,” added David Bates.
Ohio is one of the hardest hit states by the heroin epidemic. Jeff Phillips, who was in the Ohio Valley from Dayton, says he agrees with the East Liverpool Police for posting the photo to show the direness of the situation.
“It’s a horrible thing. I travel all over that state of Ohio, and I see and talk to people in the courts. I work in the courts and it’s a very very bad problem,” said Phillips.
The passed out driver of the vehicle, Pasek’s boyfriend, James Acord was convicted on child endangering charges last week and was sentenced to nearly one year in jail.