After the overdose of a woman who struggled with addiction and relapsed, police in Ohio are doing everything in their power to make sure her husband and nine children have nothing to worry about this holiday season.
Jimeta Sanders, 31, developed a heroin addiction after she was given opiates for a back injury, reported Fox 45.
On Wednesday, Sanders was allegedly given drugs by two men — whom Middletown police believe are a “father/son team.” While the men were still present, Sanders used the drugs and and overdosed in front of her children, five boys and four girls aged 1 to 14.
The two men told the children they were going to the store and would return. However, they never came back. Instead, they took Sanders’ money and fled. Middletown police were so disturbed by the story that they decided to do something.
“Losing their mother at this time of year is bad enough, but we found out there was two men there with her at the time, and after she was gone on the ground, they took money from her and told the kids they were leaving to go get pop and never came back,” police chief Rodney Muterspaw told the Miami Herald. “That speaks a lot about those two individuals.”
The Middletown Division of Police posted to their Facebook page and asked people to send Christmas gifts for the children as well as other household donations like a refrigerator, stove and even ornaments for a new Christmas tree the officers bought.
In a video posted to Facebook, Muterspaw explained why the department felt compelled to help the children and their father, Andre Sanders.
“They have a dad who works really hard and he was gone at the time at work. They are struggling, they don’t have anything, they don’t have much at all, so our detectives who responded … didn’t sleep last night, they are tore up over this,” Muterspaw said. “Our dispatch who took the calls are tore up over it, our officers who responded just don’t do well with these things because no matter how hard you think you are, when you deal with kids in these situations you never get used to it.”
“But the detectives came in today and they wanted to do something for this family, so we put it on our Facebook page, and man did our community and beyond respond unbelievably.”
According to Muterspaw, over $15,000 has been donated so far as well as gifts and some larger items. If you’d like to send a money donation, they can posted to the following address:
Butler Heritage Federal Credit Union
660 N. University Blvd.
Middletown, Ohio 45042.
The account name must be specified as “Kindness for the Sanders Family.” Checks can be made out to the Middletown Police Department at One Donham Plaza, Middletown, OH 45042.
Andre Sanders said he appreciates the outpouring of support as his family grieves the loss of his wife, who he called “a proud mother” who “had a heart of gold.”
“I just want to say thank you to everyone who's donated,” he told Fox45. “We appreciate it more than I could ever even express.” statement.