Parents charged after toddler dies from eating morphine

Posted at 4:25 PM, Jun 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-18 16:25:08-04

North Florida parents are facing charges after authorities say their 2-year-old son died from eating a morphine pill.

Thomas Marvin Howard, 34, and 26-year-old Christian Lachelle Morgan were arrested Thursday and charged with aggravated child neglect after a toxicology report showed morphine in the toddler's system, NBC affiliate First Coast News reported.

The Bradford County Sheriff's Office reports that Howard bought two 5-milligram morphine pills from a co-worker in April but realized he had dropped one when he got home. Howard and Morgan told investigators they searched for the pill and believed their son, Bradley Howard, had found it.

Instead of taking action, authorities say the couple smoked marijuana, drank alcohol and went to sleep after splitting the other pill. Morgan woke up the next morning, discovered the child dead and called 911.

The Florida Department of Children and Families has taken custody of the couple's two other children.

Howard is being held on $350,000 bond and Morgan is being hold on $250,000 bond. According to First Coast News, the State Attorney's Office could amend the charges because the toxicology results that showed morphine in the child's system is from a preliminary report. A full report is due in a couple of weeks.

Story courtesy of our news partners at