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Parents Arrested after Modesto Baby Tests Positive for Meth, Community Speaks Out

MODESTO -- A Modesto couple was arrested Tuesday after their baby tested positive for methamphetamine.

According to the Modesto Police Department, 26-year-old Margarita Adams and 43-year-old Nathaniel Smith brought their baby to Oak Valley Hospital for treatment.

Adams and Smith were arrested for child abuse.

Investigators say the couple's home had "unsafe living conditions" and the baby was placed in protective custody.

"Not only was it dirty but, limited of food,” said Heather Graves with the Modesto Police Department.

After the parents were arrested, people immediately took to social media to rip apart their parenting but one man sees it differently.

"Like really? Who are you to judge? We all have problems,” said William Pearson.

Pearson doesn’t know the couple but he knows their story all too well.

“What I can tell you is not too long ago, I have these parents' same story. The house was dirty, my children weren’t in my best interests, all I wanted to do was use,” Pearson said.

Pearson is a recovering meth addict speaking from a perspective of sobriety.

“Two years six months and 22 days clean," Pearson said.

Every day of it counts.

He’s willing to bet that Adams and Smith, who both tested positive for meth, aren’t bad people who need to get good. But, sick people who need to get well.

“We need to get them into treatment,” Pearson explains.

He says what many people don’t understand is that meth addiction is a disease -- so strong, so obsessive that some addicts are literally incapable of putting their children before it.

“Tragic, and sadly. It happens. It happens more often than I think people know,” said Michelle Lucas with the New Hope Recovery House in Modesto.

Pearson also works at the recovery house now, counseling other addicts.

"Often, we see lots of miracles,” Lucas said.

They see families fight to get healthy and stay together even when some think it's safer if they stay apart.

“So to the parents out there who wanna judge and say they’re a monster and they need to be jailed and throw away the key, I say think not -- give them a chance,” Pearson said.