BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (CN) – Parents of a newborn baby say bungling hospital employees misattributed a positive drug test to their child, and the mistake cost them custody of their baby, from whom they have been separated for more than 6 months – and that state workers took away their daughter too.
Michael Pinkston Jr. and Rebecca Wilson sued St. Vincent’s East hospital and Danette Shinn, a caseworker with the Jefferson County Department of Human Resources.
They say that after their son, Michael Pinkston III, was born on Nov. 26, 2010, nurses at St. Vincent’s East tested a baby with the last name Borden for methamphetamines, then misattributed the test results to their son, who “never tested positive for any type of drugs.”
Shinn then “removed the child from the care and custody of his parents while the infant and his mother were still patients at St. Vincent’s East,” even though Rebecca Wilson voluntarily submitted to, and passed, a urine drug screening, “which was negative for methamphetamines,” according to the complaint.
The parents say they submitted negative hair follicle tests to the Department of Human Resources, but the county took away their son anyway, and took away Pinkston’s young daughter as well.
“The defendant Danette Shinn and Department of Human Resources have had numerous opportunities to return Michael Pinkston, III and his sister, Britney Pinkston, to their mother and father, but failed to do so, even though having received repeated evidence of clean drug tests by Michael Pinkston, Jr., Rebecca Wilson, and Michael Pinkston, III,” according to the complaint.
The parents want their children back, and damages for negligence and pain and suffering. They are represented by Roger K. Fuston of Birmingham.