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Philadelphia woman charged in death of son

Philadelphia woman charged in death of son

Philadelphia woman charged in death of son

A 32-year-old Philadelphia woman was charged in 2022 with causing the death of her 10-month-old son by exposure to illegal drugs, according to Burlington County District Attorney LaChia L. Bradshaw and Medford Police Chief Arthur E. Waterman.

Vanessa Hampton was charged with second-degree manslaughter and third-degree possession of a controlled dangerous substance. She was taken into custody in Philadelphia last week and is awaiting extradition to New Jersey, according to a news release from the Attorney General’s Office.

The investigation began in November 2022 after Medford officers were called to a home for the report of an unresponsive infant. The baby was taken to Virtua Hospital in Voorhees and then transferred to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. However, he failed to regain consciousness and was pronounced dead about a week later.

An autopsy conducted by the Philadelphia Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the death a homicide, concluding that the baby died of drug poisoning after exposure to Xylazine. The drug – known on the street as tranq – is widely used in veterinary medicine as a sedative, muscle relaxant and painkiller, but it is not approved for human consumption or medical treatment, the prosecutor said.

The charges against Hampton allege that she was responsible for exposing her child to the drug, which resulted in his death. The murder investigation was conducted by members of the Medford Township Police Department Criminal Investigations Bureau and the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office.