St. Paul man charged with taking 2-year-old son to 'dope house'

  • Updated: March 11, 2014 - 12:44 PM

A St. Paul man took his toddler-aged son to a “dope house” two days before the boy was rushed to the hospital because he was “in a deep, deep sleep like he was drugged up,” according to charges filed Tuesday.

Joseph M. Ray, 22, was charged in Ramsey County District Court with child endangerment and violation of a domestic abuse no-contact order. Ray’s 2-year-old son was “severely dehydrated” and tested positive for amphetamine, a central nervous system stimulant used to treat a variety of conditions. Methamphetamine also metabolizes into amphetamine.

According to the complaint: Ray and his father took the boy to Children’s Hospital Sunday because he was pale, dehydrated and had chapped lips. Police responded to the hospital that day, where Ray admitted taking the boy to a “dope house.”

Ray said the boy’s mother abandoned the boy five weeks earlier, so he was caring for the child at his grandmother’s house in the 600 block of Jessamine Av. E. in St. Paul. Ray told police he took the boy to a “dope house” across the street, where someone was smoking methamphetamine and a woman gave his son “a teaspoon of liquid cherry Tylenol gel or something,” the complaint said.

“She said [the boy] looked ‘kinda sick’ and told Ray to give the medicine…,” charges said. “Later that day, [the boy] ‘got really sunk-eyed.’ ”

Ray was also at the hospital with a woman he was not supposed to have contact with.

Chao Xiong

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