"I don't have any doubt that Colby and Lacey love their kids", Sgt. Spencer Cannon, with the Utah County Sheriff's Office, told Fox 13. He was given a cash card for the items, but as he left the store with his two-month-old daughter, employees confronted him about the purported theft. Christenson and Wilde told police that friends had told them it was a good way to hide drug withdrawal symptoms in a baby.
On June 28, authorities said they were contacted a woman caring for Wilde and Christenson's pets. Investigators later learned from the Division of Child and Family Services that the youngest three children tested positive for methamphetamine - and the infant also tested positive for heroin and morphine.
As police investigated the robbery, they discovered an even worse abuse when the couple later admitted under questioning that they rubbed the powder from crushed Suboxone pills onto the gums of their newborn baby so that its withdrawal symptoms would not be obvious to doctors and hospital staffers. The vehicle seat rolled several times as Wilde let go of it. Wilde picked up the auto seat and ran out a different door.
Christenson allegedly admitted that she crushed up prescription pain pills which Wilde administered to the infant.
Authorities say it's common for parents of drug-addicted children to crush up methadone or Soboxone, drugs used to treat opioid addiction, and rub it into their gums - a method the couple used after apparently learning it from their friends. In an attempt to escape, the Utah man slammed into the sliding doors and dropped his infant daughter. As they did this Wilde handed the auto seat holding his daughter to a stranger, ran to his vehicle, and drove away.
He was arrested by a sheriff's deputy in the auto park.
Christenson was charged July 7 in 4th District Court with child endangerment, a third-degree felony, plus drug possession and possession of drug paraphernalia, class B misdemeanors.
Christenson was waiting inside the Walmart with their two sons and another son she had from a previous relationship.
Utah Valley Hospital, where the girl was born, released a statement to Fox 13 in Salt Lake City, in which officials said newborn safety is a top priority.
All four children were taken from the suspects and given to the father of the oldest boy who heroically told child welfare officers that he didn't want to take his 8-year-old son from his siblings and break the children up. When she arrived, she discovered numerous items of drug paraphernalia and called the Sheriffs Office. DCFS became involved in the case, having all four children tested for drugs.
The two are now being housed in jail on a cash-only bail of $10,000 each.
Wilde fled the scene - after dropping a vehicle seat holding his infant child multiple times - but was arrested a short time later, according to police, who charged him with driving under the influence of drugs, possession of heroin and methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving without insurance, theft and child abuse.
Following service of the search warrant on July 18, Wilde and Christenson were arrested and booked into jail.