FAIRFIELD, Conn. — Fairfield police have arrested the owner of an unlicensed daycare in town in connection with the March death of a 4-month-old Shelton boy in her care, police said.
Carol Cardillo, 53, was arrested Thursday and charged with second-degree manslaughter, reckless endangerment and risk of injury to a minor, police said. She was released on $250,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in Bridgeport Superior Court on Sept. 15.
On March 22, Fairfield police officers responded to 63 Edgewood Road to investigate the report of an unresponsive infant. The baby, Adam Gregory Vasaturo Seagull, was transported to St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport, where he was pronounced deceased.
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy, listing the cause of death as acute diphenhydramine intoxication and ruling the death a homicide, police said
Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine that should not be administered to children under the age of 2, and should only be administered to children between the age of 2 and 4 after consultation with a doctor, police said.
After receiving the autopsy report, Fairfield detectives worked with the State’s Attorney’s Office, the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, and several medical professionals, determining there was probable cause to arrest Cardillo, police said.
Cardillo, who had operated an unlicensed daycare in her home for about 11 years, initially told officers she had given Adam a bottle around noon on March 22 and then put him down for a nap in a play crib, police said.
She told police she did not give Adam Benadryl.
When she went to check on him around 2:55 p.m., he was unresponsive, according to reports.
Several attempts to revive the baby were unsuccessful, and he was pronounced dead at the hospital, police said.
Cardillo was caring for eight children ranging in age from 4 months old to 4 years old on the day Adam died, and there were four adults at the home, police said. The daycare has been closed since the death.
The baby had not been ill, police said, and there were no signs of trauma, so the death was initially thought to be cause by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. However, the infant’s body was sent for an autopsy because the death was untimely, police said.
Adam’s family called the baby, who was born in New Haven on Nov. 17, 2015, their “little prince,” “tootie muffin” and “little man” and his mother referred to him as “mama’s sweet boy,” according to his obituary.
"His infectious smile brought immediate joy to everyone who had the privilege of experiencing it. As he would look at you with his beautiful brown eyes, your heart became bigger and fuller with love," the obituary said.
This is the second arrest in two months of a daycare operator in the death of a child in their care in Fairfield County.
On Aug. 8, Nydia Carrillo-Maldonado, 35, who owned Little Bears Beginnings Daycare in Stamford, was arrested in the death of a 2-month-old baby girl. She was charged with first-degree manslaughter and risk of injury to a minor.
The baby, Bella Redondo of New Canaan, was declared dead at Stamford Hospital at about 6:20 p.m. July 20. Stamford EMS had rushed the girl, who was having difficulty breathing, from the daycare center at 3 p.m. that day.
Her death was rule a homicide due to blunt force trauma to the head.
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