The parents of an 18-month-old Toronto girl have been charged after police say the toddler died from ingesting illicit drugs.
Police in the Ontario city say that in October 2017 they received a report of a child in distress at a hotel where her parents had been staying. According to police, officers found the child lying on the ground, unresponsive, and with injuries consistent with abuse. The parents of the girl, who are Jamaican, were interviewed, and admitted that drugs had been in the home. The investigators say the girl’s parents admitted that the toddler had ingested marijuana and she had later stopped breathing. After performing CPR on the child for about 30 minutes, she was transported to the hospital where she was declared dead.
According to the Toronto Star, while doctors and police are investigating the case, they ruled that the death was accidental. However, while the girl’s death is still under investigation, her parents, Marcellus and Poywayne Alexis, now face charges of manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child.
MDR family press release. Details to follow this afternoon. pic.twitter.com/ZGMRxoKVDH — Mitch Dyer (@mrmitchdyer) September 13, 2018
The Toronto Star reports that the girl’s father, Marcellus Alexis, admitted that he had smoked marijuana with his daughter shortly before she stopped breathing. He later explained that he believed that his daughter had accidentally ingested the drugs when she spilled a small piece on herself, but that was after they had smoked marijuana together.
“For me, it was a real wakeup call,” he said. “I realized how stupid I had been and, in no way, does that mean that I’m an addict, but it was sad when I realized I had done something that’s so bad.”
In the fall of 2017, the Toronto Star reports that marijuana use among young people in Toronto’s suburbs was on the rise, with more than 60 percent saying they use the drug.
Read the full story at the Toronto Star.
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