Wichita police take four kids under the age of 12 into protective custody after they say the children tested positive for methamphetamine. Officers say a sex offender was inside when they got to the home on the 2700 block of S. Bennett.

Ashleigh Swarts, the children’s mother, says she doesn’t use drugs now, but has dealt with addiction in her past. Which is why she lets friends who have also had that struggle stay at her home, that’s how she thinks her kids were exposed to meth.Ashleigh Swarts

“My kids are not bad kids, they are good babies and they love me a lot,” the mother added.

Police and D.C.F came to the southwest Wichita neighborhood Tuesday night to take four kids out of a home.

Lt. James Espinoza says the children were 12, 7, 5 and 2-years old.

“They are my life, they are my everything so for them to be gone, you don’t know what to do,” the mother said.

She says she had no idea they were exposed to drugs, but admits she lets friends stay at her home who have struggled with addiction.

Two other adults were inside when police came to the home.

“You have someone that is out of prison here, you have someone who is out on parole here,” the mother said. “But when you look at the world, who are the people that need the most help to get back into society.”

Those people aren’t in her home anymore, but now she doesn’t know when or if she will get her kids back.home

“I understand the issue at hand and they want them to be safe and protected, but at the same token it is causing more problems emotionally because they are taken away from me,” the mother said. “I am not a bad mom, I just have my issues.”

One of the two other adults in the home at the time was a registered sex offender.

The mother says she doesn’t let that woman around her kids, she comes over to help her clean her home. But she says that woman just happened to be at the house when police came to take her kids.

Police made no arrest in the case, but the investigation remains active and charges could be filed.

Wichita police have taken four children into protective custody after they tested positive for methamphetamine, an official said Wednesday.

Also, a sex offender/parolee was at the home where the children were found, police Lt. James Espinoza said.

The children’s mother said Wednesday night that she never exposed her children to drugs nor allowed anyone to use drugs around them. She said she had stopped using drugs. She has invited friends into her home, she said. “I have a big heart, and I try to help too many people.”

It is the third time – but the first since she and her children have lived in Sedgwick County – that her children have been removed from her, the woman said. The first time was in 2008, then again in 2011, she said. She has lived at the home on South Bennett for about two years. Social workers visit her home once or twice a week, she said.

A court hearing is scheduled for Friday morning to determine the next step in her children’s custody, she said.

It is the second time her children have been tested for drugs, the woman said. The first time, she said, “they were clean.” The latest test, using hair follicles, was last week, she said.

The Eagle is not using her name to protect the identity of her children and because authorities are investigating whether the children are victims.

The removal is emotionally hard on her children, she said.

Earlier Wednesday, Espinoza, the police spokesman, gave this account: At around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wichita police and state workers – reacting to the fact that four children tested positive for meth – took the children into protective custody. The authorities went to the 2700 block of South Bennett, where the children were living.

The boys and girls, ages 2 to 12, were taken to a hospital for examination and remain in protective custody. They had no life-threatening conditions, he said.

Their parents, in their early 30s, are suspects in an ongoing investigation, Espinoza said.

Police also found a 24-year-old woman at the home, near Pawnee and Meridian, who is a sex offender and parolee, he said. Police will be checking with state officials to determine whether she violated conditions of her parole by being around the children, he said. The children’s mother said the parolee didn’t live at the home.

Also in the home was a 34-year-old man who told police he had recently been released from jail.


  1. Kathleen allen says:

    My two children and their father failed the hair follicle fest when DCF came for a welfare check yet Ginger Zimmerman( worker on the case) did not file a CINC case instead my children were left in the home which is a unsafe environment. I passed my hair follicle I then got kicked out of where I was living with nowhere to go in the middle of the night. Now my kids father has filed a P.F.A aganist me so I can’t have any contact with my children, and he has refused to take the last two hair follicles for DCF, and DCF isn’t doing a damn thing they are allowing my children to remain in a unsafe Drug filled environment when a CINC should of been made when my two kids 5 and 6 failed for meth in his care and also on the fact that he has already lost 3 kids to the state due to drugs. What do I do now? Something needs to be done