OAN’s Avril Elfie
5:48 PM – Wednesday, September 20, 2023
A woman who ran a daycare facility where a 1-year-old died from an opiate overdose deleted more than 21,000 encrypted emails to her husband after the fatal accident, according to recent court documents. has become clear.
On Tuesday, day care owner Gray Mendez, 33, and Carlisto Acevedo Brito, 41, who rented a room in the Kingsbridge apartment complex where the day care operated, were charged with two federal charges. charged with a crime.
Mendez and Brito are also charged with “conspiracy to distribute deadly narcotics” and “possession with intent to distribute deadly narcotics.”
The new charges come as more information is surfacing about what happened to Nicholas Dominici after he was found unresponsive.
According to the federal complaint, Mendez exchanged approximately 21,500 text messages with a drug co-conspirator, whom law enforcement has identified as her husband.
After the infant’s death, all of their texts had been deleted.
During Mendez’s interrogation, authorities discovered that she told her husband that he was questioning her and her whereabouts and ordered her to tell him she was at work. She then advised him to hire a lawyer.
Authorities say about a kilogram of fentanyl, confiscated in a taped box containing thousands of dollars worth of lethal drugs, was found in a closet next to mats piled up for children to nap on. It was done.
Mendez claims she was unaware of the presence of extremely powerful drugs that also harmed her three other young children. One of the victims was an 8-month-old infant who tested positive for fentanyl use.
Police also reportedly said that along with fentanyl, two pressing devices used to combine the drug with other drugs were discovered, one of which was connected to Brito’s apartment.
According to prosecutors’ documents, Mendez told police that he cleaned Divino Niño Day Care six days a week and that the kilopress found at the scene “could have been left there by a previous tenant.” Yes,” he stated.
The day care owner also said that on Friday, the day of the incident, her husband had been seen removing suitcases from the facility minutes before emergency personnel arrived and earlier in the day. He claimed there were no visitors. .
Prosecutors said Mendez had three phone conversations before calling 9-1-1, once with another child care worker and twice with her husband, and told them what happened during that time. I tried to cover it up.”
After police were called, Mendez allegedly called her husband several more times, according to court filings. Her husband arrived at the apartment and stayed for about two minutes before she fled into an alley with two full shopping bags while her children were unresponsive and awaiting medical attention. .
U.S. Attorney Damien Williams spoke on the matter, calling the pair’s actions “unconscionable” and “inexcusable.”
“Parents entrusted the care of their children to Gray Mendez. Instead of diligently protecting the well-being of these children, as alleged, she and her co-conspirators directly put them at risk. “We exposed them, conducted drug raids, and stored deadly fentanyl in the very spaces where children ate, slept, and slept. We played,” Williams said. “Mendez and her co-conspirators’ disregard for the lives of the children in her care is simply astonishing.”
If convicted of the federal charges, Mendez and Brito could face up to life in prison and a minimum of 20 years.
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