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Toddler's death at New York City day care caused by fentanyl overdose, autopsy finds

4th person arrested in day care fentanyl death
Husband of day care owner arrested in NYC fentanyl death probe 01:52

The death of a 1-year-old boy at a day care in New York City's Bronx neighborhood earlier this month was caused by a fentanyl overdose, an autopsy has determined.  

Nicholas Dominici's cause of death was acute fentanyl intoxication, the New York City medical examiner's office announced Friday. His manner of death was deemed a homicide.

Nicholas Dominici
Nicholas Dominici Photo provided

On the afternoon Sept. 15, Dominici and three other children at the day care were rushed to a hospital after being reported unresponsive. Three of the children were administered Narcan, federal prosecutors said.

NYPD investigators later determined that the children had been exposed to fentanyl, and said the day care was being used as a fentanyl mill.

Prosecutors said a kilogram of fentanyl, along with multiple fentanyl presses used to process the drugs, were found in a closet of the day care. Officers executing a search warrant later also discovered a trap door with a secret compartment that contained more than five kilograms of fentanyl and other drugs, police said.

A total of four people have been arrested on federal drug charges in the case, including the owner of the day care, 36-year-old Grei Mendez, who also faces state murder charges.

Her husband, Felix Herrera-Garcia, was captured Tuesday in Mexico after fleeing New York City. According to a criminal complaint, Mendez called her husband before calling 911 when the children began to show signs of an overdose.

Bronx Day Care Death
Outside the day care in New York City's Bronx neighborhood where a 1-year-old boy died of a fentanyl overdose. September 17, 2023.  Theodore Parisienne for New York Daily News via Getty Images
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