Fentanyl Crisis: Miami Boy, 10, Reportedly Died With Painkiller in Body

A 10-year-old Miami boy who died last month reportedly had fentanyl in his system — spurring investigators to trace how someone so young could come into contact with a synthetic opioid ravaging communities across the country.

Preliminary toxicology tests show that Alton Banks had the painkiller in his system when he collapsed and died at home on June 23, the Miami Herald reported Monday.

It’s unclear how Alton came across the fentanyl, which has prompted warnings by law enforcement agencies that breathing in, or even touching a small speck of it, can be fatal.

Authorities told the Miami Herald there’s no evidence to suggest he came into contact with drugs inside his home in the Overtown neighborhood, which is considered “ground zero” for the city’s opioid epidemic.

Alton had returned home from a neighborhood pool earlier in the day and was vomiting, according to the newspaper. He was found unconscious later that night.

NBC News could not immediately independently verify the toxicology report. Darren Caprara, a spokesman for the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office, said Tuesday that samples in Alton’s case were still being tested.

“We are aware of the public safety issues in play here and we are doing everything we can to get the results as accurately and quickly as we can,” Caprara said.

The fifth-grader’s death comes about two months after an Ohio case grabbed national headlines when a police officer said he accidentally overdosed on fentanyl following a drug arrest.




IMAGE: Illegal fentanyl

Illegal fentanyl seized in a drug raid in Dayton, Ohio.