A man is charged with child cruelty after an emaciated 14-year-old boy is found in a burning home and doctors determine he overdosed.
The Broward Sheriff's Office said deputies were called to a fire Tuesday in Deerfield Beach.
A 14-year-old boy was taken to Broward Health Coral Springs for treatment after the fire. A doctor examined the teen and determined he was emaciated, weighing only 85 pounds, and had unexplained red blotches on his legs that he did not get from the fire. He was wearing dirty clothes and appeared to be dirty all over, BSO said.
"They did find that in addition to being malnourished, he had red blotches on his skin. It's all under investigation to determine how exactly it is that he got this," said Kayla Concepcion, of the Broward Sheriff's Office. "They did find drugs in his system."
Doctors found barbiturates, opiates, cocaine and marijuana in his system, according to investigators. BSO said the teen had overdosed before arriving at the hospital, and investigators said he had several pills and cocaine with him.
Darin MacDannald, 47, of Deerfield Beach, told deputies he had a prescription for the pills and that he hides them so the teen can't get to them, BSO said. Investigators said MacDannald told them he did not know where the teen got the cocaine.
In the complaint affidavit, BSO said deputies believe MacDannald "failed to provide proper care and supervision that are necessary to maintain (the teen's) health. This is evidence that the victim child is severely malnourished and has unexplained red blotches on his body. The defendant failed to properly supervise (the teen) in that (the teen) was easily able to obtain his prescription medications and ingest them to the point of overdosing."
MacDannald's bond was set at $7,500.
A neighborhood watch volunteer said he had thought the 14-year-old boy was about 10 years old because he was so thin. Neighbors said the man and the boy are father and son, and that they have lived at the mobile home for two years.
The volunteer said and BSO confirmed that a woman lived at the home with the man and the teen, and she died Monday after battling several medical conditions.
The teen was admitted to the hospital under the Baker Act.