A video (below) of a woman lying on the floor of a store while her 2-year-old daughter tries to revive her was released by police in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Sept. 21.
The woman's name has not been released, but police said that she will likely be charged with child endangerment, notes NECN.
The mother allegedly overdosed in the toy aisle of a discount store, which prompted the toddler into action.
While the girl tried to help her mother, witnesses called 911 and others filmed the tragic scene.
A man who may have known the woman is seen on the video, as are paramedics who rendered aid.
According to police, the mom was later revived with Narcan, which is normally used for opioid overdoses, and taken to a local hospital.
The little girl was taken into emergency custody by the Department of Children and Families.
"It's heartbreaking," Lawrence Police Chief James Fitzpatrick said. "This is definitely evidence that shows what addiction can do to someone and what happens when they use these types of narcotics."
"You see someone in the throes of addiction like that, what they're willing to sacrifice," Fitzpatrick added. "I don't know if they have that thought process about what they're sacrificing to feed their addiction."
Deanna Cruz, who helps operate an opioid prevention program, refused to watch the video out of respect for the family, and questioned why people would film rather than help:
Why not help a crying child whose mother is laying there? I like to see her as a person who happens to have an addiction issue. We know in order to get addiction under control people need resources, People need long term sustained resources to get their addiction under control. And that's what we don't have.
We are all impacted by this epidemic. If not personally, you or a loved one. If you are out in society today, you are potentially going to be exposed to an overdose.
The mom was contacted by NECN, but did not issue a comment.
The Food and Drug Administration, which has approved numerous opioid-based prescription medications, approved an implantable anti-addiction drug called buprenorphine that is supposed to help people who are addicted to opioids for six months, reported The Washington Post in May.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted that there were 28,647 opioid (primarily prescription pain relievers and heroin) death overdoses in 2014.
WARNING: DISTURBING VIDEO