A St. Louis Park couple lied to police and doctors that their 1-year-old son had mouthed a Tylenol pill when he was suffering from a fentanyl overdose, according to charges.
Waymon H. Murphy, 25, was charged Monday in Hennepin County District Court with one count each of child endangerment, child neglect and fifth-degree drug possession. Deja D. Harper, 28, was charged with one count each of child endangerment and child neglect.
The baby survived after spending six days in the hospital.
"Officers noticed that the baby was making significant gurgling and crackling noises with each belabored breath," the charges said of the scene of the overdose. "His eyes, hands, feet, and legs were in a fixed position and did not move and he was extremely pale."
According to the complaint: Police were called Oct. 3 to the couple's apartment in the 1400 block of Colorado Avenue South for an unresponsive baby. Harper allegedly told police that Murphy had taken Tylenol for a headache, forgot to put away the bottle and the baby ended up with a pill in his mouth.
Murphy allegedly told police he left a pill bottle with one Tylenol pill on the bed with the baby. He allegedly said that he went to the bathroom and returned to find the pill in the baby's mouth, and that he removed it but the baby became unresponsive.
Police at the scene tried to treat the baby, the charges said, but he did not respond. Paramedics rushed him to the hospital.
Doctors intubated the baby and told Harper and Murphy that his symptoms were inconsistent with the side effects of Tylenol, the charges said.
"Physicians told the parents that if medical staff knew what the baby had actually ingested or what had happened to the baby, they could better treat him," the charges said. "Defendants maintained that the baby had just taken Tylenol."
Toxicology tests showed that the baby tested positive for fentanyl, according to the complaint. Doctors were unable to treat the baby for an opioid overdose until they had the test results, said the charges, which did not specify the time frame.
Murphy submitted a urine sample after the baby was taken to the hospital that allegedly tested positive for fentanyl. Harper provided a urine sample that could not be tested because it had been tampered with and diluted, the charges said.
Murphy and Harper's history with child protection includes a 2016 case in which they were with their infant in a car that contained a gun and narcotics, the complaint said.
Murphy posted bond and was released from jail Saturday, according to the Hennepin County sheriff's jail roster. Harper was in custody as of late Monday afternoon.
Chao Xiong • 612-270-4708 Twitter: @ChaoStrib