Stepfather charged with manslaughter after 8-year-old boy dies of fentanyl overdose

Stepfather charged with manslaughter after 8-year-old boy dies of fentanyl overdose

An 8-year-old Kentucky boy believed to have died from an allergic reaction to strawberries last month was actually killed by fentanyl, and his stepfather now faces criminal charges in his overdose death.

Middle school student Trey Harris died last month of “fentanyl intoxication,” authorities announced as his stepfather Antonio Person, 33, was charged with manslaughter on Wednesday, according to WFIE.

Person and Harris lived under the same roof and it was determined that Person had drugs inside the home, according to a Madisonville police report.

But questions remain about how the child ingested the deadly opioid.

“It was confirmed that the child’s death was due to a fentanyl overdose. It is not yet confirmed whether this was intentional or accidental,” said police officer Brandon Holeman, according to the station.

“This investigation is still ongoing. So we don’t know if he ingested it intentionally, accidentally, how he came into contact with it, so that’s something we’re still investigating.”

When the young man developed a rash after eating a batch of strawberries at a high school fundraiser, his family gave him Benadryl and bathed him before seeking medical treatment on the night of March 14, police said. Madisonville.

The boy's family brought Harris home from the hospital around 1:30 a.m. the next day and then changed his clothes and put him to bed.
When they tried to wake him for school hours later, he was unresponsive and was later pronounced dead, police said.

After Harris was suspected of dying from the fruit, the Hopkins County health department issued a warning to throw away strawberries purchased at the event, but the federal Food and Drug Administration said this week they were harmless.

Pessoa, who was identified as the boy's stepfather in an obituary, was charged with manslaughter on Wednesday after being arrested last month for drug trafficking and illegal gun possession, police said.

Harris was remembered as a “fun-loving child who loved to play pranks on his mother especially and laugh,” according to his obituary.


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