The arrest of a young Nampa mother on child endangerment charges this past weekend left two children in protective custody, their mother in jail and her relatives reeling.
“The whole family is devastated, mortified,” said Regina Dilworth’s mother, Rosie Dilworth of Caldwell.
She was stunned by the allegations — Regina is accused of trying to give her 4-year-old daughter to a stranger, then jumping into an irrigation ditch and submerging her 9-month-old son up to his neck — and angered by the judgmental reactions on social media.
“I try to avoid Facebook at all costs,” Rosie Dilworth said Tuesday, but still she’s read many hurtful comments since her 22-year-old daughter’s arrest Saturday and details emerged about the case Monday.
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“My daughter is a good person, and they’re making her out to be a monster,” she said. “I do not condone what she did, but I love my daughter and support my daughter. She needs help.”
After passers-by pulled her from the South Nampa ditch and police safeguarded her children, Regina Dilworth told police she had injected bath salts mixed with the prescription painkiller Dilaudid the night before.
A probable cause affidavit filed by Nampa police indicates her actions were based on delusion: She said she heard voices telling her that her children were possessed; she told the woman to whom she tried to hand her daughter that she wanted her to “save my girl”; and she indicated she sought to baptize her infant son in the ditch.
Regina Dilworth has two pending drug-related charges in the Treasure Valley: a misdemeanor drug paraphernalia charge in Canyon County and a felony drug possession charge in Ada County. Her mother said she was aware Regina had a problem with drugs, but she had never heard of her using the illegal synthetic drugs dubbed “bath salts” until after Saturday’s arrest.
And, she said, she has never seen or heard of Regina doing anything to endanger her kids before this weekend.
“I feel like the system has failed my daughter,” Rosie Dilworth said. “If she had a drug problem, they didn’t push the issue. They didn’t force her to go into rehab. They didn’t force her to get help.”
Maybe now, she said, her daughter will get the help she needs.
Regina was an A student at Parma and Nampa high schools, her mother said. She played in the band, served as drum major and held down a part-time job as well as a high GPA.
Later, Rosie Dilworth said, “she got entangled in the wrong crowd and it led her down the wrong road.”
Now Regina faces a charge of felony injury to a child for submerging her infant and a misdemeanor injury to a child charge for walking in the middle of a road with her 4-year-old while under the influence of drugs. She remains in the Canyon County Jail, and her preliminary hearing is set for Aug. 13.
Her mother said she wishes online commenters were more compassionate when considering Regina’s case. but she’s very grateful to the passersby who took action last weekend to protect the children. One woman, noting Regina’s bizarre behavior, called police and followed the young mother down East Sherman Avenue, ultimately pulling the infant out of the ditch, police said. A man helped pull Regina out of the ditch and held her until police arrived.
“I would like to tell them ‘thank you’,” Rosie Dilworth said. “I do not know who they are, but they are a definite godsend.”