Deputies arrest mother after 2-year-old overdoses on fentanyl

Whitney Ard.
Whitney Ard.(EBRSO)
Published: Aug. 2, 2022 at 5:46 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 3, 2022 at 3:15 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A mother was arrested on Tuesday, Aug. 2, after it was determined her 2-year-old son died from a fentanyl overdose.

According to the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office, Whitney Adriel Ard, 28, is charged with negligent homicide in the death of Mitchell Robinson. Deputies arrested Ard after receiving the results of Robinson’s toxicology report. According to the arrest warrant, the coroner’s report revealed Robinson’s cause of death was acute fentanyl toxicity and 14 mL of fentanyl was found in the child’s blood.

Emergency responders rushed Robinson from his home to the hospital on Sunday, June 26, where he was pronounced dead shortly after arriving, according to the sheriff’s office.

Mitchell Robinson
Mitchell Robinson(Facebook)

According to the arrest documents, the toddler had been previously taken to the hospital twice this year showing signs of an overdose and he was treated with Narcan both times before being released back into the mother’s custody.

The arrest warrant indicates the first incident was in April when the little boy was taken to the emergency room for “breathing issues and the second was on June 4 to be treated for “lethargic behavior, acute respiratory failure, and seizure disorder.”

Ard was previously arrested on fentanyl, meth, and other drug charges in May. The arrest warrant issued for the death of her child indicated she told investigators she was just released from jail on June 24 in connection with the drug arrest.

RELATED: Drug bust nets 3 arrests - seizure of 2 lbs. of fentanyl, 18 lbs. of meth, & other drugs

According to this latest warrant, Ard told detectives her mother returned the toddler to her the day after she was released from jail. She reportedly said the toddler slept in the bed with her that night but he woke her up at some point during the night wanting something to eat so she put a bowl of cereal on the floor for him to eat.

The document stated she told investigators when she awoke the next morning, the toddler was cold to the touch. It also stated that she added his fingertips, mouth, and tongue were blue, so she took him outside and a friend performed CPR until EMS arrived on the scene and continued to try to resuscitate him.

The warrant indicated Ard told emergency responders the toddler had a history of seizures.

Investigators said a search of the home turned up a clear piece of plastic containing a white powdery residue that was found under Ard’s bed.

According to the arrest warrant, an interview was done with the toddler’s sister on July 6 and she reportedly said she has seen lots of pills on her mother’s bed in the past and that the little boy “ate mom’s pills” and when Ard found out, she whipped him and made him go to bed but later took him to the hospital.

Authorities said further investigation into the child’s death showed he was treated with Narcan at the emergency room on April 12. The warrant stated he displayed seizure-like behavior but his EEG “was not concerning for seizures per neurology,” seizure medications were not necessary, and he was released into the care of his mother four days later.

The warrant indicated the little boy was also treated with Narcan on June 4 and released back to his mother two days later. It added she told physicians he was his “normal self” and when she put him to bed, she noticed “abnormal breathing” similar to what happened in April. According to investigators, both incidents were reported to DCFS.

Ard’s bail was set at $50,000. She also has to wear an ankle functioning GPS device, ensuring her compliance with the bond conditions, according to officials.

DCFS was not immediately able to provide any comment on this matter.

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