19-month-old toddler who died ingesting toxic black tar heroin was the ‘victim of criminal negligence,’ investigator says

The parents of a 19-month-old toddler who died after ingesting toxic drugs are now facing criminal charges. Acting Ontario Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe ruled in March that Adrian Weston died from ingesting black tar…

19-month-old toddler who died ingesting toxic black tar heroin was the ‘victim of criminal negligence,’ investigator says

The parents of a 19-month-old toddler who died after ingesting toxic drugs are now facing criminal charges.

Acting Ontario Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe ruled in March that Adrian Weston died from ingesting black tar heroin.

Though it remains unclear what caused Weston’s death, Toronto police Chief Mark Saunders said Monday he believes his parents, 22-year-old Cheyanne St. Clair-Williams and her 26-year-old husband, Nathaniel Williams, were involved.

“There’s no evidence that the death was the result of a heroin overdose or that it was a traditional opioid overdose,” Saunders said at a news conference Monday. “The couple that we’re in front of, it seems as though they may have been into the illegal drugs, black tar heroin.”

St. Clair-Williams and Nathaniel Williams have been charged with criminal negligence causing death, police said. Police have not released a photo of either of the suspects.

In her report released March 15, Lapointe wrote that the toddler tested positive for heroin after being admitted to hospital April 8, 2018.

The toddler had spent the night at his grandparents’ house with his father, who was the registered caregiver, and a young woman who regularly visited the home, the report states. The grandparents did not realize until noon the next day that Adrian hadn’t been fed or changed all morning. The toddler was referred to the hospital in the afternoon after lying in his crib for two hours and when an emergency room nurse checked on him he had started shaking.

He was soon taken to hospital by ambulance and did not respond to medication.

The couple claimed to be empty nesters with no children in their family, the coroner wrote. The couple were living together in the home and living as husband and wife in the home they shared with their parents.

The home’s double garage was the only place the child was spotted by family members that night.

The Canadian toddler’s death led to a harsh public outcry over the criminalization of the poor decisions of children and the community’s tolerance for such matters.

Still, federal, provincial and local law enforcement authorities have reported shrinking their numbers and operations that target drug dealers, dealers themselves and the “smurfs” who help them.

This development shows that the risk of fatal illicit drug overdoses is being seen in a new light by the federal government.

Dr. Asim Ghosh, deputy deputy minister of the Health Canada’s health organization, called the ruling a “travesty” and “unacceptable.”

“Twenty-one-month-old Adrian Weston died while attending his grandparents’ home – presumably a safe place. No adult should or even should attempt to give their child any illegal drugs,” Ghosh said.

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