MISSION, Kan. (AP) — A mother and father have been charged with first-degree murder in the alleged drug overdose death of their 2-year-old son in a Kansas City suburb.
Shelly Vallejo, 29, and Jean Morales, 26, both of Shawnee, made a first appearance Friday. They also are charged with aggravated child endangerment and a felony charge alleging that they possessed Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid that is potentially deadly if misused. Each is jailed on a $1 million bond.
Court records said the child’s death in November at a home in Merriam stems from the “commission of an inherently dangerous felony.” No details about the child’s death were released in court records, but Vallejo’s attorney, Michael Duma, said the state contends the child died of a Fentanyl overdose.
“She is a grieving mother who tragically lost a child under tragic circumstances,” Duma said. “We believe the evidence will show that she did not in any way contribute to the death of her son. She has been cooperative with investigators since the death of her son, and it comes as a surprise to us that she is charged with a crime.”
He added that he believed she would be acquitted. Morales’ attorney didn’t immediately return a phone message seeking comment.