A 29-year-old Aurora man has been found guilty of child abuse after a toddler, a child of the defendant’s girlfriend, was hospitalized when he ingested fentanyl.
A jury on Wednesday also found Antonio Espinosa-Tovar guilty of possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute, according to a news release from the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.
In May of 2021, Aurora police officers responded to Children’s Hospital Colorado where the child was being treated for ingesting an unknown opioid, the release said. Toxicology tests confirmed that the child had fentanyl in his system. Medical staff saved the child’s life after administering three doses of Naloxone.
Investigators searched the home of Espinosa-Tovar, his girlfriend, and her two children, and found three separate bags on a shelf containing 71 Oxycodone pills laced with fentanyl, prosecutors said.
“Espinosa-Tovar admitted to investigators that he was currently out of work and had been selling
pills to make extra money,” the release said. “He also admitted that he knew the child had taken a pill after he found half of a pill on the floor.”
Espinosa-Tovar’s trial began Monday and a jury returned guilty verdicts just after 1 p.m. on Wednesday.
“We’re grateful that this 3-year-old child was able to recover following Mr. Espinosa Tovar’s
reckless actions,” District Attorney John Kellner said in the release. “While this situation could have ended in tragedy, this man must be held accountable for putting innocent lives in danger. He made a careless choice to leave this deadly poison in a residence where young children were staying.”
Espinosa-Tovar will be sentenced on Sept. 8.