O’FALLON, Mo. – Two parents are behind bars after their eight-month-old child died from exposure to fentanyl, meth and other illegal drugs.
The child died Thursday, two days after being exposed to several illicit drugs. Prosecutors have charged the child’s parents, Valerie Shelley and Jordan Denson with several felonies in the death.
Police learned of the situation after responding to a call for service Tuesday in the 300 block of Narrowleaf Lane. Investigators say an infant was found unresponsive in a crib. Parents and first responders performed CPR on the baby, who later regained a heartbeat.
The child was rushed to a pediatric hospital and placed on life support. Despite life-saving efforts, the child died Thursday afternoon.
Sgt. Bryan Harr of the O’Fallon Police Department talked about the drugs found near the child.
“When the officers discovered in the house, drug paraphernalia that the child would have immediate access to,” Harr said. “Based on that information, they sought toxicology results, which revealed methamphetamine and fentanyl in the child’s system.”
Diphenhydramine and cotinine were also found in the child’s system when toxicology tests were done. He said the drugs were “within arm’s reach of the child in the crib.”
“It’s always hard for our officers, they handle this type of call. We are just glad we could get there when we could,” Harr said. “Our officers did everything within their power until the medics arrived, and they used all their resources to try to save the child.”
Shelly and Denson are charged with child endangerment (resulting in death), endangering creating substantial risk, possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. Both are jailed in St. Charles County on a $500,000 cash-only bond.