ST. LOUIS – An arrest warrant has been issued for a St. Louis woman whose toddler son died of a fentanyl overdose earlier this year while in her care.
On Wednesday, the St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office charged Rquitta Abercrombie with one count of first-degree endangering the welfare of a child and possession of a controlled substance.
According to a probable cause statement obtained from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, the incident took place on May 3. An officer was dispatched to Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital after a 1-year-old had died of acute fentanyl intoxication.
The child’s mother initially told a social worker at the hospital that she was at a friend’s house and her son was crawling on the floor when she saw something in his mouth. She said she took an orange pill from the boy’s mouth. The child’s lips turned purple and became unconscious. She later clarified it was a capsule the boy put in his mouth.
Police claim that when the mother spoke with the officer, she said she was lying. She said the incident happened at her home in the 7800 block of Virginia Avenue.
The woman told the officer the child was on her bed, which she shared with him. According to police, the mother said she was on her phone and not paying attention to her son. When she looked over at him, he was sitting up, but his lips were purple, he was unresponsive, and there was a white substance on his lips.
The mother initially denied anyone in the home took illegal drugs, other than marijuana, but police said she eventually admitted to taking fentanyl one or two times a day, including that morning. She told the officer the fentanyl she took was in an orange capsule.
According to police, the woman said she kept her fentanyl in her purse, which, at the time of the incident, was next to the bed.
Police detained the mother at the hospital and found in her possession several capsules, one of which tested positive for fentanyl.