GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A 3-year-old girl is in foster care after her parents died of suspected heroin overdoses the same day in their Grand Rapids home, court records show.
The child was in the home at the time of the overdoses, according to documents filed in Kent County Circuit Court Family Division.
A young teenager in the home called 911 to report the emergency in the 200 block of Dickinson Street SW shortly after 12:30 p.m. on Aug. 22.
Emergency crews used naloxone to try to revive 27-year-old Disaun Williams and 28-year-old Ashley Williams, but the couple was pronounced dead at the scene.
Emergency responders found Disaun Williams in a chair on the first floor, while Ashley Williams was discovered in a bed upstairs.
The couple had been married for a year and lived at the home with their daughter and several relatives, including Ashley’s mom, a stepgrandfather, Disaun’s brother and Ashley’s two siblings, who are 12 and 14 years old.
“All adult household members admit to knowledge of Disaun and Ashley’s heroin use,” wrote a Child Protective Services caseworker in a court order.
The document, dated the day after the couple’s drug overdose, allowed the caseworker to enter the home on Dickinson Street SW and take the 3-year-old into protective custody.
“(The child) is currently without proper care and custody and there does not appear to be any appropriate relatives,” the caseworker wrote.
“There are concerns for substance use by the other adult family members,” the CPS employee added.
According to the court filing, two of the surviving adult household members admitted to recent drug use, and the third surviving adult “was observed to be intoxicated on scene” the day the couple died.
The court document also references a separate police report about domestic violence at the home the same day, but before the overdose deaths.
“(Ashley’s mom’s) boyfriend stated the argument was due to (Ashley’s mom) being upset because she wanted to use more cocaine,” the caseworker noted in the court filing.
24 Hour News 8 stopped by the Dickinson Street home, but no one inside wanted to comment. However, we have learned that family does hope to maintain custody of Ashley and Disaun’s daughter.
Jennifer Jenkins was like a second mom to Ashley Williams.
Jenkins, who lives in Oceana County, wants to make sure people know that Ashley was a good person.
“That drug is what took over. That’s not Ashley,” said Jenkins, who dated Ashley’s dad, Joe Mitchell.
Mitchell was stabbed to death in a fight outside the Stockbridge Party Store on Grand Rapids’ West Side in December 1996.
Jenkins started dating Mitchell when Ashley was just 3 months old.
“Ashley is a good mom and a good daughter. She took care of her family. She just got caught up in something that took over,” said Jenkins, who now lives in Pentwater.
Jenkins said Ashley had been working two jobs, at Meijer and Family Dollar, until a couple months ago.
“She was a provider. I taught her when she was little not to depend on a man,” Jenkins said. “She always made sure her house was clean. She cooked fresh food all the time. She always had a vehicle.”
Jenkins said Ashley and Disaun both took good care of their baby girl.
“Her husband was a loving person too,” Jenkins said. “They took very good care of the baby. They loved that baby to death. She’s clean. She’s fed. Anything she ever needs, she had.”
Regarding Ashley’s heroin use, Jenkins said she did not know that the 28-year-old had been using the drug.
“I don’t know what happened or how she got a hold of that. That wasn’t my baby,” said Jenkins.
Ashley and Disuan’s daughter has been taken into state custody and is currently residing in licensed foster care.