CORRECTION: No drug, alcohol in meth lab baby

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By Lou Elliott Jones, Editor

An earlier report on the Chiefland Citizen website had incorrect information on a baby found at the scene of a meth lab in Bronson.

A medical exam of the child did not find any drugs or alcohol in its blood system.

The information in the March 22 story posted on the website provided by the source was not correct.


A 5-month-old baby found in a motel room meth lab on March 6 when officers raided Rooms 20 and 21 at the Bronson Motel was turned over to the Department of Children and Families and later to relatives of the mother, who was arrested in the raid.

The infant was given a medical exam — which is typical procedure, said John Harrell, Northeast Florida DCF spokesman. The child was later released to the care of relatives. 

In the meantime, more charges have been filed against one person in the case, while another person has already gone before a judge and is serving probation on three charges, and the third person faces additional charges of violation of probation on prior convictions.

• Russell A. Girdler, 27, originally charged with manufacture of methamphetamine in the presence of a child on March 6, is now also charged with two counts of child neglect without great harm, two counts of unlawful use of a two-way communications device, two counts of possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, two counts of selling methamphetamine, and two counts of keeping a shop for dangerous drugs. He is in Levy County Jail and his bond is $380.000. He is due to be arraigned before 8th Judicial Circuit Judge Stanley Griffis III on April 3. 

• Sean David Franzius, 26, charged with manufacture of methamphetamine in the presence of a child and keeping a drug dwelling, now also faces a charge of keeping a shop for dangerous drugs. His bond is $200,000. He also faces three violation of probation charges on larceny convictions dating from 2011. He was sentenced in January 2012 to three years in county jail and three years drug offender probation on each larceny charge, with all sentences served concurrently. He has a violation of probation hearing on April 4 before Griffis.  

• Judith April Gazdun, 24, was charged with child abuse, possession of narcotics and possession of drug paraphernalia. She came before Griffis III on March 13 and pleaded nolo contendre to a charge of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, keeping a shop for dangerous drugs, possession of paraphernalia. Another charge — producing meth — nolle pros (dropped) by the State Attorney's Office. 

Griffis withheld adjudication — did not make a finding of guilt — on the three charges and sentenced her to one year of probation on each charge to be served consecutively.