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New Canaan Father Charged With Manslaughter In Heroin Overdose Of Son, 25

Mark Lynch, 57, of New Canaan has been charged with second-degree manslaughter in the heroin overdose death of his son Chris, 25, on Sept. 25. Photo Credit: New Canaan Police Department
Chris Lynch. The 25-year-old New Canaan man died of a heroin overdose on Sept. 25 allegedly with heroin supplied by his father, Mark Lynch, 57. The father was charged with manslaughter Monday by police. Photo Credit: File

NEW CANAAN, Conn. — A New Canaan father charged with manslaughter in the overdose death of his 25-year-old son exhibited "extreme recklessness" in sharing his own stash of heroin with his son, who was struggling to kick his drug habit, New Canaan Police said Wednesday.

Mark H. Lynch, 57, of 2 Parade Hill Road, Apt. A, was charged with second-degree manslaughter, possession of narcotics and sale of drugs in connection with the death of Chris Lynch on Sept. 25, police said. Mark Lynch surrendered to New Canaan Police on Monday evening and posted $150,000 bond. He is due in court on Dec. 2.

New Canaan Police officers and the New Canaan Volunteer Ambulance Corps responded to a call at 7:22 a.m. on Sept. 25 on Parade Hill Road, where they found Chris Lynch unresponsive in bed and not breathing, police said. He was declared dead five minutes later, police said.

A distraught, crying woman on the floor screamed at police and paramedics to do something and to give Narcan to Chris Lynch, police said. Narcan is used to attempt to revive people who have overdosed. 

The father, Mark Lynch, told officers that he had given his son heroin the night before and handed over four folds of heroin from the nightstand next to his bed, where he had let Chris Lynch fall asleep, police said. 

The arrest warrant said Chris Lynch was found lying in a supine position on the bed, with obvious rigor mortis with his arms clenched up toward his chest. There was "white, frothy vomit" on the pillow under his head near his mouth, the arrest warrant said.

Mark Lynch said that his son had fallen asleep around 10 p.m. and that he had checked on him during the night after hearing "gurgling" noises, police said. The father went to sleep around 4 a.m. and when he awoke after 7 a.m. he found his son unresponsive and called police.

However, Mark Lynch later retracted his statement that the heroin was his and instead said it belonged to Chris Lynch, the arrest warrant said.

The State Medical Examiner's Office ruled that Chris Lynch had died of acute heroin intoxication, police said.

On Sept. 22, Mark Lynch accompanied his son and his son's lawyer, Mike Skiber, in a court appearance for Chris Lynch at Norwalk Superior Court.

Chris Lynch had been living in Colorado, where his mother lives, but had returned to his hometown of New Canaan recently, police said.

Police listened to a recording of that court appearance, which was to update Chris Lynch's efforts at drug treatment. In the recording, according to the warrant, it was said that Chris Lynch was religiously attending all of his meetings and therapy sessions and was successful in attempting to turn his life around and kick a drug habit. In the warrant, it doesn't say who made those comments. Police noted that Mark Lynch was present and heard all of those encouraging statements.

"That evidence shows that Mark Lynch, without doubt, knew of his son's drug therapy and counseling and knew of all the reports of how well his treatment was going," the arrest warrant said. 

"That as far as all/he was concerned, his son was clean, sober, and beginning to turn his life around at the time of his arrival in Connecticut. That Mark Lynch, with extreme recklessness, did disregard these facts and instead of telling his own son to stay away from him — because he himself was not well and he would seriously endanger his son's recovery and treatment — did the exact opposite," and provided his son with heroin, the arrest warrant said.

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