KINGSBRIDGE, The Bronx (WABC) — A one-year-old boy is dead and three other children were hospitalized after drug equipment were found at a day care in the Bronx.
First responders were summoned on Friday afternoon to Divino Nino Daycare on 2707 Morris Ave. in Kingsbridge for reports of cardiac arrest.
Drug production equipment found inside the home-based day care is suspected in the death of the one-year-old boy and hospitalization of three other young children.
A kilo press was discovered by police executing a search warrant inside the home following the death of the child, identified as Nicholas Dominici.
“This is an item that is commonly used by drug dealers when packaging large quantities of drugs,” said NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said during an overnight news conference.
It is unknown what type of drugs were potentially being manufactured or how the children came into contact with them.
“We don’t know exactly what happened to those babies,” NYPD Police Commissioner Edward Caban said.
Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan said the victims somehow came in contact “with a powerful substance, which can, through either inhalation, ingestion, or in touching of the skin, intoxicate the recipient. We don’t know what happened in this case.”
Police say it happened after the children ate and took a nap. A one-year-old boy was pronounced dead at Montefiore. A two-year-old boy is in critical condition. An eight-month-old girl and another two-year-old boy were also rushed to the hospital. It is unclear if it is someone who works at the daycare.
The Medical Examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine Dominici’s cause of death, and doctors will take urine and blood from the surviving children to try to figure out what drugs they were exposed to.
Two people – the woman running the Divino Nino Day Care at the time of the tragedy and an unidentified man – are being questioned by detectives, with charges expected.
The day care, for children between 6 weeks and 12 years old, recently opened in January and just passed a surprise visit from city inspectors last week with no violations found.
Investigators revealed the children appear to have been exposed to the unknown opioids over an extended period yesterday. A two year boy who went home at around 12:15 p.m. was later found by his mother to be “acting lethargic and unresponsive.” The mother rushed him to the hospital, where the opioid-reversal medication Narcan saved his life.
Officials say the children, who stayed at the day care, ate something at around 1 p.m. and took a nap. When workers went to wake them up at 2:30 p.m., three were unconscious.
All the children who were hospitalized live nearby in the Bronx. None are related.
After the children were removed from the day care, the fire department tested the air for environmental hazards and found no evidence of carbon monoxide. Officials then began to suspect opioid exposure and executed a search warrant to search the rooms, cabinets and other spaces, where the drug packaging device was found.
Law enforcement officials described the day care as operating inside a converted apartment, and they were still investigating whether anyone currently lived there.
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https://abc7ny.com/bronx-daycare-incident-day-care/13789889/ Bronx day care child death: 1-year-old boy dies, 3 others hospitalized of suspected Opioid exposure