FALL RIVER, MASS. (WHDH) - A father and his girlfriend are facing criminal charges after a preliminary investigation into the death of the man’s 14-year-old son with special needs who was found with fentanyl in his system led to evidence of daily narcotics abuse in their Fall River home and the neglect of the boy’s twin brother, authorities said.
John Michael Almond, 33, and his girlfriend, Jaclyn Marie Coleman, 26, were arraigned Thursday in Fall River District Court on charges of possession of a Class A drug and caretaker neglect of a disabled person, according to the Bristol District Attorney’s Office.
Officers responding to a 911 call regarding an unresponsive boy at 107 Green St. around 7:45 a.m. found Coleman performing CPR on 14-year-old David Almond, the DA’s office said.
David, who suffered from an intellectual disability, was rushed to Charlton Memorial Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
A neighborhood resident described Almond’s home as a “house of horrors,” adding that he is shocked but not surprised by the boy’s death.
Amid an investigation into David’s death, investigators found evidence of daily narcotics abuse by the adults inside the home and determined that David’s twin brother, who is also intellectually disabled, was a victim of neglect, the DA’s office said.
The twin brother and a third child who was also living in the home are now in the custody of the Department of Children and Families.
Prosecutors said the children were emaciated, undernourished, and under-thriving.
On Wednesday night, investigators took John Michael Almond and Jaclyn Marie Coleman into custody.
In addition to the drug and neglect charges, Coleman also faces charges of assault and battery on a police officer and the obstruction of justice portion of the state’s witness intimidation statute after she allegedly destroyed a cellphone and assaulted a police officer who attempted to stop her from doing so.
An autopsy will be conducted on David either Thursday or Friday, according to the DA’s office.
More charges could be announced depending on the autopsy findings.
Almond and Coleman were both ordered held without bail. They are due back in court next week for dangerousness hearing.
An investigation into David’s death remains active.
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