SARASOTA, FLORIDA — The parents of an eight-month-old baby who died last month were arrested after an investigation revealed the baby tested positive for lethal amounts of fentanyl.
On May 31, Sarasota County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to reports that an infant had died at the home of Nicholas and Carissa Alexander. Investigators allege the baby had not been checked on between 10:20 am to 4:30 pm that day until the father returned home and found the child face down on the couch.
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s office charged the Alexanders with aggravated manslaughter of a child. The couple is being held without bond at the Sarasota County Correctional Facility.
Detectives took blood samples from the couple, which later revealed they were impaired by drugs when questioned by investigators. The infant’s autopsy report showed the baby had been dead for several hours due to fentanyl poisoning.
OVERDOSES AT ALL TIME HIGH
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 110,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2022. Most of these deaths are driven by illicit fentanyl, a deadly synthetic opioid.
Fentanyl is now the number one killer of adults aged 18 to 45. But a recent study conducted by Families Against Fentanyl found that children under the age of 14 are dying of fentanyl poisoning at a faster rate than any other age group.
Illicit fentanyl is often mixed with other drugs like cocaine and marijuana. The drug may even appear in illicit vape pods, significantly increasing the risk of accidental overdoses. Fentanyl poses a severe danger to unsuspecting individuals, including children who may come in contact with the drug.
More resources can be found at Dose of Reality Florida, a one-stop resource for Floridians to learn about the dangers of opioid misuse, how to receive support for addiction and where to drop off unused prescription drugs.