Dandridge woman to spend 12 years in prison for using meth while pregnant

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A Dandridge woman will spend the next twelve and a half years in federal prison for making and using meth while pregnant.

Lacey Weld, 27, was sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Knoxville. She had pleaded guilty in November to federal charges.

Weld's baby was born severely drug-addicted and suffered from withdrawals for almost six weeks.

Department of Children’s Services Case Manager Lynnie Vaughn testified that in the approximately 50 cases she has investigated involving drug-addicted babies, this case was by far the worst, with this baby suffering extreme harm.

Video evidence from the investigation showed that Weld was in a meth lab for approximately 40 minutes, where she cooked and used meth. Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Matt Thompson testified about the extremely hazardous conditions, including the toxic fumes and explosive environment, surrounding that meth lab.

“This nation has seen a tragic rise in the number of babies born addicted to drugs. Through this prosecution, the U.S. Attorney’s Office sends a message that, should a child, born or unborn, be exposed to a substantial risk of harm through the manufacture of methamphetamine, we will pursue any available enhancements at sentencing,” said U.S. Attorney William C. Killian.

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