In 911 call, father says high school students were dead when he found them

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by MATT GOODMAN

WFAA

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 11:28 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 8 at 8:33 PM

Texas investigators found evidence of heroin use and a mobile meth lab inside the home where two Southlake Carroll High School students were found dead this weekend of suspected overdoses, according to a police affidavit released Monday.

On Saturday, Kyle McNutt, 17, and Chase Nunez, 18, were found dead in the bedroom of a home in the 700 block of Heather Wood Drive. They were unresponsive and foaming at the mouth when medical help arrived, a reaction “consistent with a drug overdose,” the affidavit says.

The Grapevine Police Department released search warrant affidavits and the 911 call on Monday.

The home where the teens were found belonged to Robert Marino, 60, who lived there with his son Cullen Marino, 22. Grapevine Police Department spokesman Sgt. Robert Eberling said Cullen found the two teens unresponsive and moved them to an upstairs bedroom where they died. The elder Marino found the two and called police on Saturday.

“I might have two dead kids upstairs in my house,” Robert Marino told the dispatcher. “They came over to visit my son last night then they passed out. He got up this morning and started banging on the door and said he couldn’t move them.”

Had they received immediate medical attention, Eberling said, they would have likely lived. The elder Marino told the dispatcher he applied chest compressions to one of the teens to no avail.

“I thought, at one point, I pushed his chest and I thought I heard him swallow, but then I can’t get anything else from him,” he said in the 911 call.

Robert Marino is heard asking Cullen if the teens consumed any drugs in the house. “He said it would’ve had to been before they came here,” Marino answered, adding that the two came to the home sometime after the end of the Cotton Bowl game between Texas A&M and Oklahoma Friday night.

The affidavit, however, says Cullen told officers that they were “partying” and ingesting narcotics. He said Nunez and McNutt had already smoked marijuana and taken Xanax before arriving at the home. Cullen later said he drove to Dallas, bought drugs and returned to Grapevine, where they all ingested them. The affidavit does not say which drugs the teens took. Results from a toxicology test may take up to six weeks.

Early in the morning, the document says Nunez and McNutt passed out in the loft area of the home.

“Cullen and unknown friends moved Chase and Kyle into the bed of an upstairs bedroom where they later died,” the affidavit says.

“What a reasonable person would do is call 911,” Grapevine police spokesman Sgt. Robert Eberling told News 8’s Jonathan Betz on Sunday. “He chose to just simply move them to another bedroom.”

Cullen Marino remains in custody, charged with criminally negligent homicide. Investigators do not believe his father was aware of what was going on in the home. He told investigators he heard the teens stomping up the stairs at about 10:30 p.m. "I told them to be quiet," he said in the emergency call.

The document says police found a “clear baggie with powdery residue” in plain view on a table beside the bed where the teens died. In an adjacent room, police found a spoon containing heroin residue and a box “containing multiple clear glass pipes that appeared to have residue,” the document says.

In the loft area upstairs where the teens initially passed out, officers found a milk crate “believed to be a mobile meth lab” and a “spring-like item” containing some sort of drug residue. Cullen Marino also had a spoon with heroin residue stuffed in his front pocket, which was discovered when he was arrested, the document says.

Also in the home were “books, records, ledgers, bank records, money orders and computer files relating to the transportation, ordering, sale and distribution” of narcotics, says the affidavit.

Cullen Marino was arrested in 2008 and 2010 for marijuana possession. In March, he was caught and arrested for driving while intoxicated. Recent Facebook posts, however, mention his recent attempts at sobriety.

“Just been trying to stay sober (except for bud of course) and trying to get back to school. Had to refind myself, kinda lost sight of my goals for a while,” he wrote in one post, “but feeling better errday [sic].”

Grief counselors will be on hand at Carroll High School on Tuesday when students return from winter break.

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