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A tragic tot starved to death after he was left strapped in his car seat at home for several days while his mother lay dead from a lethal drugs overdose.
But miraculously a three-year-old daughter survived the horrific ordeal – and even desperately tried in vain to feed her younger brother.
The heartbreaking discovery was finally made when a probation officer visited the home in Portland, north-east of Nashville back in February and saw a woman collapsed on the bathroom floor and a young girl running around the home alone.
She called 911, and when officers attended they found the woman had died several days earlier, and a young boy was also found to have died whilst strapped in a car seat.
Police officers identified the deceased as mum-of-two Tiffany Spears, 32, and her 15-month-old son, Nicholas Crowder.
It is not known how long exactly Nicholas was alive, but the medical examiner noted that Spears had been dead for several days.
Their autopsies were only released on Monday.
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Davidson County Assistant Medical Examiner Emily Dennison ruled both deaths an accident, saying Spears had died after taking a fatal overdose of a meth and fentanyl.
The three-year-old girl tried to take care of her younger brother when she found herself locked in the house for days as her mother lay dead in the bathroom.
The medical officer also noted that food, including dried egg and eggshells, were found in and around his car seat.
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He recorded Nicholas died from starvation and dehydration.
The little girl, who survived the ordeal, was taken to hospital for treatment as a precaution.
The home had other drug paraphernalia inside and had apparently been linked to previous drug-related deaths at the rented home.
But it remains unclear if those deaths were related to previous tenants.
- In the News
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