Jefferson County women face mail theft and child endangerment charges

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. - Two Jefferson County women are accused of stealing mail, including nearly $50,000 in checks, as well as drug charges.

Arrianna Smith and Billie Jo Patton were each charged with felony stealing, possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and endangering the welfare of a child.

Charges were filed Monday for the crimes court documents say occurred March 26, 2017.

According to Jefferson County charging documents, last March, deputies were checking on a suspicious vehicle at the High Ridge Quick Trip on Gravois. They found Smith and Patton in the vehicle "acting extremely nervous."

Deputies said they found a purse inside the vehicle containing mail from different names and addressed and checks totaling $48,528.95. According to court documents, Patton admitted that the two were stealing mail all morning and that Smith had a glass smoking pipe hidden in her bra, which Smith later handed over to deputies.

Investigators learned Smith and Patton had small children they left at a Cedar Hills home with men they said they'd just met. When deputies searched the home, court documents indicate they discovered "blue pills hidden in a Tootsie Roll change bank," a "green zipper pouch containing a glass smoking pipe and residue" or a "crystal substance" in Patton's room which her child sleeps in. Court documents state the green zipper pouch was "lying on the floor next to the mattress which the child could very easily get out and get into."

Charging documents say Patton admitted to using methamphetamine within the last 12 hours while she was caring for her child and that Smith admitted to using Xanax and methamphetamine within the last 12 hours while she was caring for her child. The children were later taken into DFS custody.