MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Alton Banks may be the youngest victim in the opioid crisis gripping South Florida and the rest of the country.
The 10-year-old boy collapsed and died at his Overtown home June 23rd.
His mother told authorities he had been at a public pool and park earlier in the day.
A neighbor remembers when he came home in June after a visit to a neighborhood pool.
“He came home throwing up. So when you sick, maybe you go to bed,” said Jesse Davis. “So when she come home, a mama go look for her kid and she found him unresponsive.”
“Preliminary findings are it was a mixture of heroin and fentanyl,” Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said Tuesday.
It’s likely the elephant tranquilizer-grade drug, fentanyl, rapidly poisoned the little boy’s body. It’s still a mystery how the boy came in contact with the heroin-laced painkiller.
“It was probably just a small touch of powder, not a whole big bag,” said Dr. Parham Eftekhari.
Just a small amount of fentanyl breathed in or touched, can be deadly.
“Their body, their liver will not be able to handle the toxicity of that compound compared to a 50-year-old gentleman that is bigger,” said Dr. Eftekhari.
CBS4 has chronicled the opioid crisis in South Florida, riding with Miami first responders.
The epidemic is still going strong, according to Miami Assistant Fire Chief Pete Gomez.
“We are going about 115 to 120 runs a month,” Gomez said.
Banks’ death is seen as a warning for parents.
“We need to be vigilant keeping an eye on children to make them as safe as possible,” he said.