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Mich. Woman Sentenced for Drugging Child

November 30, 2006

MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. (AP) _ A suburban Detroit woman who admitted injecting heroin into her 12-year-old nephew and giving him and her 15-year-old niece heroin and cocaine was sentenced to eight years in prison.

Jacqueline Ellen Vuich, 26, pleaded guilty Nov. 2 to delivery of narcotics to a minor, first- and second-degree child abuse, maintaining a drug house and keeping a person younger than 16 in a home where prostitution occurred. She was sentenced Wednesday by Macomb County Circuit Judge Matt Switalski.

Vuich’s daughter lived at a home rented by Vuich’s mother. Vuich was visiting Jan. 24 when she injected her nephew with heroin as he ate dinner. He was treated for a heroin overdose at a nearby hospital.

Jan Ruby Catton, 47, Vuich’s mother, was charged with maintaining a drug house and a house of prostitution, and with second-degree child abuse. She pleaded no contest and was sentenced Wednesday by Switalksi to two years’ probation.

``She is probably not a good caregiver,″ Switalski said of Catton, who has lost custody of the eight grandchildren under her care.

``I am sorry,″ said Catton. ``I tried to help.″

Defense Attorney Timothy Barkovic said Vuich’s upbringing was a factor in her behavior. ``All of this stemmed from the environment she grew up in,″ he told The Detroit News.

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