• California father, toddler son die of suspected fentanyl overdoses

    By: Ann Smajstrla, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    SANTA ROSA, Calif. -

    Days after his 13-month-old son died of a drug overdose, a California man has died of an overdose as well, authorities said.

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    Patrick O'Neill, 29, was taken off life support Monday night, Santa Rosa police confirmed to The San Francisco Chronicle. He was found unresponsive Saturday next to his son, Liam O'Neill, in a Santa Rosa home. The child was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Police are awaiting toxicology results, but authorities believe the toddler was exposed to fentanyl. Patrick O'Neill was found with "life-threatening injuries," police said.

    "The officers who arrived at the scene located narcotics and narcotics paraphernalia in the bedroom, near where both of them were discovered," Lt. Dan Marincik, of the Santa Rosa Police Department, told KTTV-TV.

    Police would have arrested O'Neill on suspicion of murder if he had survived, Marincik said.

    O'Neill had a recurring drug problem and was trying to get clean in recent months, Michael Arevalo, one of O'Neill's friends, told the Chronicle.

    “Pat was struggling with addiction, but at the same time, he loved his son,” he said. “His son was the reason he got clean. It was hard for him. It was a struggle for him.”

    Autopsies and toxicology reports are scheduled for both Patrick and Liam O'Neill, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reported.

    Friends have set up a GoFundMe for Liam's funeral expenses.

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