Bartlesville Mother Charged In Baby's Death; Gains National Attention

Monday, November 8th 2010, 4:38 pm
By: News On 6

Tara Vreeland, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- A Bartlesville mother whose 10-day-old baby was found dead inside a washing machine is charged with felony child neglect.

Monday's court files say Lyndsey Fiddler was high on drugs, which contributed to her daughter's death.

Read The Entire Affidavit

The shocking details surrounding the child's death are getting national attention, including from one group that tries to prevent addicts from ever having children.

The 911 call to police on Thursday evening lead officers to a horrific scene.

"The mother was asleep and she had trouble waking her and heard the washer out of balance, clanging, so went to lift the lid so it would stop and in the washing machine, saw the baby." Said Bartlesville Police Chief Tom Holland.

A 10-day-old infant put inside the washing machine with clothes, dead after going through the entire wash cycle.

11/05/2010 Related Story: Ten-Day-Old Bartlesville Baby Found Dead In Washing Machine, Mother Arrested

The Regional Medical Lab says the baby girl's mother, Lindsey Fuller, tested positive for meth and other drugs.

Concerned about her past drug abuse, Fiddler's family tried to get her parental rights revoked in April while she was four months pregnant. That did not happen.

It's stories like this one and her own experience that pushed Barbara Harris of North Carolina to start Project Prevention. Harris and her husband adopted four children from their mother who suffered from drug addiction.

"It's actually a very simple process that prevents a lot of child abuse," Harris said.

The non-profit organization pays drug addicts and alcoholics to not get pregnant. That's $300 for sterilization or other forms of birth control like an IUD.

"Yes it takes money to get their attention and keep them focused long enough to do something responsible, but they are thankful they did. It's a win win for the women and the children," Harris said.

Harris says they've paid more than 3,600 people who have opted for vasectomies. While she's not un-sympathic to the addict, her main goal is protect babies.

"They are going to do drugs with or without our money, but at least our money is for the good. It's for positive and preventing a lot of child abuse." She said.

Harris says opponents say it's a woman's right to become pregnant. But she says along with that right comes responsibility, and if you are not acting responsibly, you should lose that right.