Police: Driver uses heroin, passes out on highway with kids in the car

Posted at 4:24 PM, Mar 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-20 18:12:32-04

A Kansas City man was arrested Friday afternoon after police say he was found passed out in his pickup with three young children in the backseat.  Officers say the man admitted to injecting heroin shortly beforehand.

Officers were dispatched to southbound Highway 283 at Highway 9 just before 4 p.m. for a report of a man passed out in the driver's seat of a truck stopped in a lane of traffic.

According to a witness, Jacob Palmer, 38, was driving erratically before stopping in the left lane of the highway.

Officers say when they approached the truck they found Palmer slumped and unconscious behind the wheel, with the end of a syringe in his hand, a metal spoon with burnt residue on the center console and a child’s bib with blood spots. Police also say they found a package containing a brown liquid, which tested positive for heroin.

Palmer's skin appeared to be yellowish and he was drooling, according to police. He was taken to North Kansas City Hospital.

The children, ages four, two, and three months, were cared for until their mother arrived.

Police later interviewed Palmer. He said he bought the heroin while at a party in Kansas City, Missouri, but he thought it was liquefied oxycodone.  Palmer said he injected himself with the liquid, according to police.  Officers say Palmer admitted he's been addicted to oxycodone for about three years, but said he has never injected heroin.

Palmer is charged with endangering the welfare of a child, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. Palmer does not have a criminal record, according to court documents.

City spokesman Chris Hernandez confirmed Palmer is employed by the Kansas City Fire Department, but he wasn't sure exactly what Palmer's job is.  It's also not clear how these charges could affect Palmer's employment, if at all.