By: Sharon Aron Baron
A nanny working for a Parkland family was arrested after allegedly giving a baby homeopathic medication deemed not safe for children.
According to the police affidavit, on September 17, 2018, the mother contacted the Broward Sheriff’s Office to report that at 8:00 p.m. on September 13, she went into the nursery to give her then five-month-old son his medication of liquid Zantac as he was suffering from gastrointestinal issues.
As she went to administer the medication, she observed a small white pill already in his mouth. When she removed the tablet, it dissolved on her fingers.
Also present in the room was his night nanny, Patricia Demeritte, 46, of Lauderhill, who claimed the pill likely fell from her phone when she took it from her pocket to a shine a light. However, her story was contradicted by video surveillance of the nursery.
Demeritte, an employee of TLC Nanny Services, admitted the pill was Arnica Montana – a homeopathic medication which helps relieve muscle pain. While natural, arnica is considered poisonous and has caused death. When taken by mouth, it can also irritate the mouth and throat, stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea, skin rashes, shortness of breath. Arnica Montana is not recommended for children under 12.
On November 21, Demeritte voluntarily visited the BSO district offices where she provided a statement, and on May 24, BSO was called to the immigration offices in Oakland Park for a warrant for Demeritte on child abuse charges. She was then booked into the Main Jail and held without bond.