‘Dead!’: Fentanyl horror at daycare centre

A one-year-old boy is dead and three other children hospitalised after possibly ingesting fentanyl at a Bronx daycare centre, police sources said.

The horrific scene unfolded around 2.40pm on Friday afternoon, New York time, at Divino Nino in the Kingsbridge neighbourhood of the Bronx, NYC, where the four children — the one-year-old boy, two boys aged two years, and a girl aged eight months — were found unresponsive in the basement, sources said.

The children had gone down for naps and were supposed to wake up at 2.30pm, sources said. They had all eaten something about 90 minutes earlier, the New York Post reports.

Three children were administered Narcan, one of whom responded to the lifesaving drug, cops said.

All four were rushed to area hospitals, where the one-year-old boy was declared dead.

The three others are in stable condition, police said. The eight-month-old girl was treated for dehydration, according to sources.

Police are now investigating whether the children consumed fentanyl, or another drug, sources said.

Fentanyl is a powerful opioid, said to be up to 100 times stronger than morphine. It is prescribed for chronic and severe pain, but illegal production of the drug has sparked a major crisis in the United States, where it is a rising cause of overdose deaths. Australian authorities are worried it could become a major problem locally too.

‘The kids are dead!’: Screams outside day care

Mel Ramirez, 26, lives next to the daycare and said she heard a worker screaming in horror.

“She was yelling for help. She was screaming and saying, ‘The kids are dead! The kids are dead!’ multiple times,” Ms Ramirez said.

When she went outside, she saw one child unresponsive on the ground by the daycare entrance and a sobbing woman trying to help another unconscious child.

“They were just pale and unresponsive,” she recalled of the heartbreaking scene. “(One of the boys’) mouth was, like, open. I was like, ‘Oh my God. I can’t do anything about it either’.”

Neighbour Anna Ortiz Irving, 73, said a mother and daughter run Divino Nino Day Care and live in the building.

“It’s a legit daycare. It’s brand new. Just a few kids, mostly babies. They’re such decent people,” she said.

“I watched them fix the whole place up. It was beautiful, all according to city code. If I had a baby, I would send it there.”

Divino Nino Day Care just passed its annual unannounced inspection with zero violations on September 6, according to city records. It had received its license in May.

Photos published by the New York Post have revealed the inside of the day care centre, with rooms strewn with opened packets of snacks and other clutter.

The daycare has a capacity of eight children between the ages of six weeks to 12 years old, records show.

A search warrant was being executed at the centre on Friday night and a white decontamination tent was set up outside the building.

This article originally appeared on the New York Post and was reproduced with permission

Originally published as Boy, 1, dead and others in hospital after possible fentanyl exposure at daycare

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