Police: Woman poisoned children with Visine drops - abc27 WHTM

Police: Woman poisoned children with Visine drops

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A former Adams County woman has been jailed on charges she poisoned her two young children with Visine eye drops.

Samantha Elizabeth Unger, 23, admitted she put Visine in her 3-year-old son's water and juice while she lived in Orrtanna, according to state police in Gettysburg.

Unger also told investigators her 1-year-old son twice became ill after he accidentally consumed the poisoned drinks she made for his brother, police said Tuesday.

The 3-year-old was hospitalized with life threatening symptoms several times and was finally flown by helicopter to Penn State Hershey Medical Center in March, according to the criminal complaint.

After several tests with different medical experts, it was determined the boy's urine was positive for tetrahydrozoline, the chemical commonly used in eye drops and nasal sprays.

Unger told investigators she did not keep track of how much Visine she used, but admitted she used more than one bottle, police said in the complaint.

Tetrahydrozoline poisoning can cause seizures, nausea and vomiting, changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, blurred vision, difficulty breathing and coma, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Unger, who has since moved to Thurmont, Maryland, was charged with three counts of aggravated assault and two counts of endangering the welfare of children.

District Attorney Shawn Wagner said Unger would not be charged with attempted homicide because she did not have a specific intent to kill her children.

Her bail at Adams County Prison was set at $50,000 cash. A preliminary hearing was scheduled July 24.

The boys have been placed in the care of their grandparents.

"They are great kids. They are a lot of fun," grandfather Timothy Unger said. "They're doing real well, right now."

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