2 Plead Guilty in Case of Boy Who Died at Bronx Daycare

4 suspects face charges in connection with child's fentanyl death
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 27, 2023 12:00 AM CDT
Updated Jun 11, 2024 12:30 AM CDT
4th Suspect Arrested in Bronx Day Care Death
In this photo from video, Grei Mendez, center, is escorted by law enforcement personnel from a New York Police station, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2023, in New York.   (WABC-TV via AP)
UPDATE Jun 11, 2024 12:30 AM CDT

Two of the four people charged in the death of a 22-month-old boy who died after being exposed to fentanyl at a Bronx daycare last year have admitted to storing the drug in the floorboards of the daycare's playroom. Felix Herrera Garcia, the 35-year-old husband of the woman who ran the daycare out of an apartment, pleaded guilty Monday to three felony drug trafficking charges including narcotics possession with intent to distribute resulting in serious bodily injury, the AP reports. Parras Paredes, 38, pleaded guilty to one similar count. They both face a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years behind bars. Garcia's wife and one other person are charged with murder, narcotics possession, and assault.

Sep 27, 2023 12:00 AM CDT

Police have arrested the husband of the owner of a Bronx day care where a child died after being exposed to fentanyl. Felix Herrera Garcia, who allegedly fled after his wife found the 1-year-old unresponsive, was captured while on a bus in Mexico Tuesday, CNN reports. Mexican authorities and US Drug Enforcement Administration agents took him into custody, and he is now in the custody of US Marshals, awaiting extradition back to New York. Herrera Garcia is the husband of day care owner Grei Mendez, who was arrested right away along with Carlisto Acevedo Brito, her husband's cousin and a tenant of the apartment where the day care was located.

A third person, Renny Antonio Parra Paredes, was taken into custody Saturday, ABC News reports. All four are accused of being mid-level drug distributors. Three other children who attended the day care were hospitalized, and authorities say analysis of the urine of one of the children confirmed the presence of fentanyl, the BBC reports. Authorities say the fully synthetic opioid, up to a hundred times more powerful than morphine, was found underneath a mat the children had napped on. Mendez's attorney says she was not aware drugs were being kept in the apartment, but surveillance footage allegedly shows her calling her husband first before calling 911, and her husband later removing bags that authorities believe contained fentanyl from the residence. (More Bronx stories.)

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