Redwood City police arrest kidnapping suspect

Local mom pleads no contest to felony child abuse

in Crime/Featured/Headline and

A 38-year-old woman pleaded no contest to one count of felony child abuse in connection with a harrowing case involving the drugging of her 5-year-old son last year.

The case unfolded when Erin McSweeney, described by prosecutors as a Redwood City transient and methamphetamine addict, dropped her 5-year-old child off at a friend’s home, and the friend noticed bruising and marks on the boy’s wrists from zip ties, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.

The friend called police, and the ensuing investigation uncovered that the 5-year-old “supposedly got into some” of the methamphetamine, according to prosecutors.

Jacob Lee St. Clair, a man living with McSweeney, allegedly “hog-tied” the boy and “held him in the bathtub to cool him off, since meth made his body very hot,” prosecutors said. McSweeney gave her son a Valium to calm him down, they added.

Prosecutors say McSweeney and St. Clair declined a friend’s suggestion to take the boy to a hospital.

“A blood test of the victim two days after the incident revealed positive for amphetamines And benzodiazepine,” prosecutors said.

The boy was removed from his mother’s custody.

McSweeney’s no contest plea came with the condition that she doesn’t serve time in state prison. She received credit for time already served and was placed on four years of supervised probation. She must complete one year of parenting class through the probation department, and complete a drug treatment program.

Meanwhile, the case against St. Clair is headed to a jury trial on Oct. 22.  He has a separate felony case in which he is charged with possession of methamphetamine for sale.