By Jon Johnson
SAFFORD – Play time at the park turned potentially deadly Dec. 2 after two female juveniles under the age of 15 had to be hospitalized for extreme alcohol intoxication.
A Safford officer was dispatched to the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center (MGRMC) at about 11:28 p.m. regarding two juveniles who had to be admitted after ingesting too much alcohol.
One of the juveniles had to be flown to Banner – University Medical Center Tucson for treatment, where she was intubated. Tracheal intubation is the placement of a flexible plastic tube in the windpipe to maintain an open airway or to serve as a conduit through which to administer drugs.
The girl stayed overnight at the Tucson hospital and the tube was taken out the following day. At that time, she allegedly told a social worker that she was peer pressured by the group of teenagers she was with to consume the alcohol.
According to information given to police, one of the boys in the group had brought a bottle of vodka to Glenn Meadows Park that he had procured from his father.
After the girls got sick, the rest of the group allegedly left them at the park and ran away. One of the sick girls’ mother then received a call informing her that she needed to pick up her daughter at the park. The mother then sent her adult daughter to pick up the juvenile, and she took her to the MGRMC. The second sick juvenile was also taken to MGRMC by her mother.
The incident is still under investigation by the Safford Police Department.