11-year-old Haverhill girl who died had fentanyl in her system, police say

Precious Wallaces died Dec. 18, 2018.

Precious Wallaces.
Precious Wallaces. –GoFundMe

LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — Authorities say an 11-year-old Massachusetts girl who died days after going into medical distress at her great uncle’s house had fentanyl in her system.

Miguel Rivera, 58, during his Jan. 22, 2019, arraignment. —Amanda Sabga / Pool

Not guilty pleas to charges including permitting substantial bodily injury to a child were entered on behalf of 58-year-old Miguel Rivera at his arraignment Tuesday. He was held without bail.

Rivera is charged in the Dec. 18 death of Precious Wallaces, who died days after she awoke struggling to breathe at her great uncle’s Lawrence apartment.

Police say Rivera waited 13 minutes before calling 911 as he flushed drugs down the toilet.

Rivera told police he feared Precious had taken his prescription sleeping pills and he didn’t call 911 right away because he was “scared.”

Advertisement

Rivera’s family said he watched Precious every weekend and loved her.

Close

Get the latest breaking news sent directly to your phone. Download our free app.