New Mexico Officer Adopts Baby from Opioid Addicted Mother


Nakyla Kelly, Staff Writer

On September 23, 2017, Ryan Holets was in the midst of responding to possible theft at a nearby convenience store in Albuquerque, New Mexico. While leaving the convenience store, he saw a man (Tom Key) and a woman (Crystal Champ) shooting heroin behind the building. Champ was eight months pregnant at the time, and living in a tent alongside Albuquerque interstate.

As a teenager, Champ tried to deal with her addiction, but she could not gain control of it. She spends up to $50 a day on drugs. According to CNN, “She’s tried multiple times to get clean, but failed.” Champ expressed that she hopelessly wanted someone to adopt her baby. “The words triggered a change in an officer’s demeanor,” Holets said. He decided not to charge Champ with drug possession.

Even though the baby’s health could have been compromised by Champ’s use of drugs, she could not face the idea of getting an abortion. Holets expressed, “You are going to kill your baby. Why do you have to be doing that stuff? It’s going to ruin your baby.”

Holets had a family of his own at home, so he suggested to adopt Champ’s child after he or she was born. “I was lead by God to take the chance. God brought us all together. I really don’t have any other way to explain it.”

A month later, Hope came into the world and was put under the Holets’ family’s care until the adoption process was finalized. She suffered a month of withdraw because of the crystal meth and heroin in her system.

A few days after Hope was born, Champ walked into the nursery to see her daughter for the last time. Rebecca Holets (Ryan’s wife) recalls Champ telling Hope, “I love you baby. Goodbye,” and turning to Holets with tears in her eyes, said, “Take care of her for me.”

Hope is no longer in the hospital, however she has weekly checkups to regulate her health. Champ is still battling with addiction, despite many treatment centers reaching out to her.