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Man Arrested For Allegedly Giving 13-Year-Old Fatal Heroin Dose

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WOODLAND HILLS (CBSLA.com) — A 23-year-old Woodland Hills man was behind bars Thursday for allegedly giving a fatal dose of heroin to a 13-year-old boy.

Brett Cronin, who was arrested and booked for murder in connection with the death, is being held on $1 million bail, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

The incident happened around 9:10 a.m. Wednesday at a residence in the 5300 block of Manton Avenue.

Police said Cronin confessed to buying and giving the drugs to his younger brother’s friend shortly after midnight.

At 9 a.m., paramedics were called to the house, but the 13-year-old was already dead.

Police said the victim voluntarily took the heroin and had a bad reaction.

“It wasn’t like he was forced to do it,” said Capt. Tom Brascia. “It was voluntary, but at the direction of this adult.”

Brascia said he’s never seen an incident like this in his career.

“I’ve been in the business for 34 years and I haven’t seen this before. The way I would characterize it is it’s very sad and it’s very tragic,” he said.

Police report Cronin has been arrested for drugs and theft before.

On the suspect’s Facebook page, there are disturbing entries about drugs. One of his favorite quotes is:

“I’d hate to advocate drugs and alcohol, but they’ve always worked for me.”

In March, he posted a picture of a pile of Xanax pills and wrote:

“Alright, so I’m finally getting clean again for me this time. I’ll still be smoking weed, but that’s all I’ll be doing from now on, except the occasional xanny maybe.”

“He’s had a heroin problem, a drug problem,” said neighbor Matan Machlouf.

However, his uncle never thought he would be arrested for murder.

“What happened is tragic and everybody here is in shock and very, very sorry about what happened,” he said.

The investigation is ongoing.

 (©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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