Police: Redmond man tried to kill son, himself with heroin

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REDMOND (AP) -- A Redmond man tried to kill his 4-year-old son with heroin on the day his divorce was supposed to be finalized, court documents say.

The man’s soon-to-be-ex-wife discovered him and the boy unconscious at their home on Tuesday, and they spent several days sedated at a hospital. Police said it appeared the 37-year-old had injected his son and himself with heroin.

Redmond police said Friday night that the man, Eric Emil Lehtinen, had been booked into the King County Jail.

He was being held on $3 million bail and had been charged with attempted first-degree murder. It was not immediately clear if he had obtained a lawyer.

Court documents describe Lehtinen as a drug dealer and addict, seattlepi.com reports (http://is.gd/A1C8jD). His wife arrived at the locked home and removed a blanket from the boy to find a syringe on his chest.

The boy was taken to Seattle Children’s, and his father to a local hospital.

It’s unknown whether the boy will suffer long-term damage from the overdose. Medical staff at the hospital found puncture wounds on his neck and buttocks, indicating needle sticks, court documents say. The hospital found evidence of not only heroin in his blood but also ketamine, morphine, codeine and other drugs.

Lehtinen had been married for six years, but recently she had been living with the boy in San Francisco, charging papers said. She had returned to Seattle for a job interview and let her son stay with his father.

Lehtinen told her that he had quit using drugs, the documents said. She found him depressed, she told police, but didn’t see any reason the boy couldn’t stay with him.

Police say Lehtinen had a history of drugs use and overdoses. In 2005, police had him involuntarily committed to a hospital after he cut himself with scissors and threatened to kill himself while withdrawing from heroin.

A search of Lehtinen’s home turned up several syringes and $12,620 in cash. If convicted, he could be sentenced to at least 15 years in prison.