6-year-old child overdosed on fentanyl, mother charged

A 29-year-old mother faces charges in Hennepin County after her child overdosed from chewing on a dollar bill that had fentanyl on it.

Brittany Elizabeth Ferrell, 29, faces charges of second-degree manslaughter in connection with the fatal overdoes of her 6-year-old child five months ago.

The criminal complaint states on May 27, officers responded to a report of an overdose at a residence in Maple Plain and found a 6-year-old who was not breathing and having a seizure. 

The child was declared dead at the scene. The 6-year-old’s cause of death was ruled as "acute fentanyl toxicity," the complaint reads. 

Ferrell spoke with police and claimed the child had slept in her bed the night before, where she found the 6-year-old who was not breathing and had vomited. She told police she called 911 and performed CPR.

The mother allegedly told police she has no clue how the 6-year-old would have died besides chewing on a dollar bill that was recently used for drugs, according to the complaint. The bill was located on the floor next to the bed where the child had slept. 

Police described the dollar bill as having burn marks on it, containing a missing corner as if there was a "bite mark" and it was wet. 

The mother allegedly told police she had used fentanyl which was supposed to be heroin, sometime within the past 48 hours. She claimed she thinks the child got ahold of a dollar bill that she and the child’s father had previously used to smoke heroin.

The father told police he gave the child Narcan, but it did not work. The complaint states the father claimed he saw a dollar bill around the child’s mouth, and he believed there may have been drug residue left on it. 

The father allegedly added that he and Ferrell used heroin but claimed he had not used that specific dollar bill, and believed it belonged to Ferrell since it was in her bedroom. 

Ferrell is scheduled to make her first appearance in court on Nov. 15. She could face up to 10 years behind bars if convicted of second-degree manslaughter.