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St. Louis County couple charged with exposing child to fentanyl

St. Louis County couple charged with exposing child to fentanyl

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ST. LOUIS — Prosecutors charged a St. Louis County couple Monday with endangering a 7-month-old's life by exposing him to fentanyl. 

Court documents say Nysha Nichols, 25, found two pills in the bedroom air vent at her apartment in the 8400 block of Plaza Rock Court just south of Bel-Ridge. 

She placed the pills on her night stand and later left her son in the room unattended. When she returned, the pills were no longer there and the boy was acting lethargic, according to court documents. 

Nichols went to the store to purchase milk and prune juice in an attempt to flush out the boy's system. An hour later, she took him to Christian Northwest Hospital. He was not breathing when he arrived, officials said. 

The boy's father, James L. Torrence, 29, denied knowing about the pills but told police if any narcotics were brought into the house, they came from him, court documents said. He also told police he had used fentanyl in the past. 

The boy tested positive for fentanyl and a substance found when cocaine metabolizes, court documents said. He was given two doses of Naloxone and recovered.

Nichols and Torrence are each facing a single charge of endangering the welfare of a child. 

An attorney representing Nichols for an initial bond hearing declined to comment. No attorney was listed for Torrence. 

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Katie Kull covers public safety for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She previously wrote about local government for the Springfield News-Leader. In her spare time, you can find her cooking, riding horses or spending time outdoors.

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