Toddler Fatally Exposed to Fentanyl at Airbnb, Family Says

Now family is suing Airbnb, property owner over the tragedy
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 7, 2023 12:28 AM CST
Toddler Fatally Exposed to Fentanyl at Airbnb Rental, Family Says
The Airbnb app icon is displayed on an iPad screen in Washington, DC, on May 8, 2021.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

Using Airbnb, the Lavenir family booked a lake house in an affluent neighborhood in Florida's Palm Beach County for a vacation in August 2021. The day after they arrived, one of their five children was dead. Now, the family, who live on a French island in the Caribbean, are suing the vacation rental company over the death of 19-month-old Enora, who died of acute fentanyl toxicity. They allege the toddler could only have encountered fentanyl at the rental property, NBC News reports. Two nights prior to the family's stay, a large party had been held at the home and drugs including fentanyl were present, according to a resident of the neighborhood who spoke to police. On the morning after the Lavenirs arrived, Enora laid down for a nap and never woke up.

Her mother went to check on her after about an hour and found her foaming at the mouth and unresponsive. She was pronounced dead at a local hospital. The medical examiner found a lethal level of the extremely potent synthetic opioid in the little girl's system; both her parents tested negative for drugs, as did Enora's formula. It's still not clear where exactly the fentanyl came from, but Enora's parents say Airbnb's cleaning procedures are "inadequate to decontaminate a property and eliminate the risk" of drug residue. They also say Airbnb failed to provide warning of the risks, and didn't do enough to ensure the home was not used for parties.

The complaint also names the home's owner, its rental manager, and the guest before them, Aaron Kornhauser, who they say allowed drugs to be brought in. Kornhauser booked the home using Vrbo, a different vacation rental site. No traces of fentanyl were found in the vacation home or on the Lavenir's belongings, but Kornhauser and the property owner both say Enora's parents and their carelessness and "negligence" are to blame for her death. No criminal charges were brought against anyone, and Enora's death was deemed accidental, the Washington Post reports. (More Airbnb stories.)

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