First woman charged with assault after birthing drug-addicted child

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A Monroe County woman is the first to be taken out of the hospital in handcuffs for giving birth to a drug-addicted baby.

An arrest warrant says Mallory Loyolas gave birth at the University of Tennessee Medical Center on July 7. After performing several examinations, both Loyola and her child tested positive for amphetamines.

During the subsequent investigation, Loyola told Det. Wes Martin of the Monroe County Sheriff's Office that she had smoked methamphetamine about three or four days before giving birth.

Last legislative session, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed a law that charges women with simple assault if they give birth to drug-addicted children. That law took affect July 1.

The Tennessee branch of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) issued a statement after Loyola's arrest, saying they are seeking plaintiffs to challenge this law, adding that is "singling out mothers struggling with addiction."

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