Local woman’s drug overdose leads to criminal charges


BUCKHANNON — A local woman remains jailed following her arrest on July 3 for jeopardizing the safety of five small children during a drug overdose.

Gina Marie Jenkins, age 27, was charged with felony child neglect creating risk of injury and possession of fentanyl for the incident that occurred at Valley Green Apartments over the weekend.

According to court documents, West Virginia State Police TFC P.J. Robinette responded to an overdose call at Jenkins’ apartment shortly after 5 p.m. where Upshur County EMS and Buckhannon Police Department were already on scene.

Jenkins’ boyfriend had reportedly found the accused “in and out of consciousness” in an upstairs bedroom upon returning to her apartment and told the officers she was holding a straw and paper packaging, commonly referred to as a stamp, in her hand.

Once Jenkins was alert and coherent, she reportedly signed a refusal for EMS services and told TFC Robinette she “took a little bit” of what she allegedly thought was Goody’s powder laying on her dresser for pain relief. When questioned as to how she took the substance, Jenkins allegedly stated, “I put a little on my tongue and I smoked it.” The officer also observed the woman’s clothes were wet and she told him she had got in the bathtub to help relieve her cramping pain.

After giving law enforcement consent to search the residence, they subsequently discovered numerous opened stamps similar in appearance to the paper packaging found in Jenkins’ hand at the time of the overdose. Additionally, two unopened stamps along with more opened packaging and aluminum foil strips covered in a white powdery residue were found under her mattress, which was sitting on a box spring on the floor. One of the unopened packages field tested positive for methamphetamine and fentanyl, according to the criminal complaint. A bag containing a leafy green substance that was presumably marijuana was also discovered on the window seal of her bedroom.

TFC Robinette questioned Jenkins about the five small children present in the apartment having access to the drugs, as fentanyl can be a lethal controlled substance. Jenkins reportedly said the children—ages 7, 5, 3, 3 and 1—were not allowed in her bedroom and told the officer “I have strict rules.” Officers on scene noted the door to her bedroom could only be locked from the inside, allowing at least four of the children easy access by simply turning the doorknob. They also pointed out to her that children often break rules, as was evidenced by them jumping on the bed while law enforcement was present.

Jenkins remains at Tygart Valley Regional Jail in lieu of a $20,000 cash bond set by Magistrate Alan Suder. If convicted of felony child neglect creating risk of injury, Jenkins faces 1-5 years in prison and/or a fine of $1,000-$3,000. She also faces an additional 2-10 years in prison for possession of fentanyl if found guilty.

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