Local News


Mother launches petition to keep breastfeeding

Posted at 10:22 PM, Apr 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-02 16:12:58-04
A local mother of 6-month-old twins has launched an online petition hoping to convince a judge to find an alternative to a short jail sentence so she can continue breastfeeding her girls.

Kristen Fleming has 420 signatures on the Change.org petition.

This as she faces a Monday court day in front of the Las Vegas Municipal Court judge who she says has ordered her to wean the twins off the breast and get them on the bottle. 

"All he keeps saying is I had a year, but it is like you don't understand what it is like to be pregnant with twins and breastfeeding for a year," Fleming said.
She is facing a two-week jail sentence stemming from a domestic violence arrest a year ago. 
Fleming admits she pushed her husband during a fight.
"I literally found out I was pregnant two weeks after getting out of jail," Fleming said.
The municipal court judge originally assigned her 26 domestic violence classes, but Fleming says the pregnancy led to complications.
"I could only do four before I developed sciatica and was bedridden, then gave birth," Fleming said.
Fleming says at that point she was breastfeeding her daughters 24/7, only getting free time come January.
"By then it was too late," Fleming said.  "I was like, I'll just go to court, tell the judge what happened. Hopefully he will give me some more time,"
The judge did delay the sentence, but Fleming says not so she could do the classes.

13 Action News reached asked for an interview with the judge, but was told judges do not do interviews because it could be a conflict of interest.

Fleming says the judge gave her time to wean her daughters off her breast and onto a bottle.

"I have tried for the last three weeks to get them to, and they won't do it," Fleming said.
Fleming says her daughters refuse to take a bottle. Plus, she doesn't want to stop breastfeeding.
She has a letter from the state ready to take to court Monday that discusses the problems that could come with a switch to formula.
"You have to realize the stress you are putting on these babies," Fleming said.
All she wants at this point is an alternative. She says she has offered do her time under house arrest.
Fleming just wants to make sure her daughters have breast milk.
"I am not trying to get out of my punishment. I'm looking out for my daughters. That is all," Fleming said.
Fleming will find out her fate when she faces the judge at 8 a.m. Monday.