A Seattle woman was arrested this week after police said she used her 10-year-old son in an attempted burglary. After her arrest, police claimed they found a stolen computer and crack cocaine in a one bedroom hotel room where she was living with four children and four dogs.
Marie Shafique’s burglary attempt was foiled when the homeowner, Michelle Geronimo, spotted Shafique’s son peeking in through a window.
“I was just shocked that it was a little boy, and when you figure out what’s going on it’s sad,” a neighbor told KOMO News in Seattle.
Both the boy and his mother allegedly fled upon being discovered. Shafique’s children have since been placed in the custody of their father.
While it’s unclear if Shafique was addicted, drug abuse experts say that one of the side-effects of cocaine use, and particularly crack cocaine use, is a powerful compulsion to ingest increasingly larger doses, leading many of the drug’s victims to empty out their personal savings, lose jobs, and resort to robbery, property theft and even prostitution. Recovery from addiction to cocaine usually requires prolonged medical supervision and psychological counseling.
This video was broadcast by Seattle’s KOMO News on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2012.