OAKLAND PARK, FL (Boca Post) (Copyright © 2023) — Broward Sheriff’s Office arrested 53-year-old Tibina Louissant for aggravated manslaughter of a child after her grand child died of cyproheptadine poisoning.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office Homicide Unit arrested Tibina Louissant on Friday, October 13th, for the aggravated manslaughter of a child.
According to detectives, on August 21st, 2022, at around 9;30 am, a call was made to Broward County Regional Communications reporting an unresponsive child at 124 N.W. 40th Court in Oakland Park. Deputies from the BSO Oakland Park District and Oakland Park Fire Rescue responded to the scene. Paramedics then took Josiah Fenelus, an 11 month old baby, to Broward Health Medical Center where he was later pronounced dead.
During the investigation, it was uncovered that Josiah Fenelus family had entrusted his care to his paternal grandmother, Louissant, over that weekend. Unfortunately, while under Louissant’s supervision and despite having no known medical issues before that time period, Josiah became unresponsive. Following his tragic passing away, BSO homicide detectives and crime scene investigators launched an inquiry into the circumstances.
In October of 2022, the Broward County Medical Examiner’s Office conducted an autopsy which revealed that Josiah Fenelus had a fatal concentration of cyproheptadine—an extremely potent antihistamine—in his body. In the summer of 2023, toxicology tests confirmed that two baby bottles found in Louissant’s home tested positive for cyproheptadine. Detectives noted that Louissant claimed she was solely responsible for preparing Josiah’s bottles while he was in her care.
The final autopsy report was completed on August 14th. Josiah’s cause of death was determined to be an overdose of cyproheptadine, which was classified as a homicide.
On Friday afternoon, Louissant was arrested and later released on bail after appearing in court at Broward County Main Jail.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, cyproheptadine is a prescription antihistamine that is also used as an appetite stimulant and sometimes sought after for weight gain or physical appearance enhancement. While it requires a doctor’s prescription, it can also be found in certain stores and online without one. It is important to note that cyproheptadine is not approved for children under the age of 2. An overdose of antihistamines can lead to confusion, hallucinations, coma and in some cases, even death. Earlier this year, BSO cautioned the public about the risks associated with using cyproheptadine without proper medical guidance.