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Author Paul Auster’s son dies days after being charged in his baby's overdose death

NBC News 4/28/2022 Marlene Lenthang and Doha Madani

The son of famed novelist Paul Auster has died, just 11 days after being charged in his infant daughter’s overdose death, officials said.

Daniel Auster died Tuesday at the age of 44, New York City Police told NBC News. Officials did not disclose his cause of death.

Police officers found Auster unconscious on the subway platform of the northbound G train at the Washington Avenue/Clinton Street stop in New York City on April 20 — just five days after he was arrested in his daughter's death.

Officers administered CPR and he was transported to Brooklyn Hospital in "stable condition," police said. He was pronounced dead at the hospital on Tuesday, authorities said.

The Office of Chief Medical Examiner said the cause and manner of death are pending.

Auster's attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

His death comes less than two weeks after his April 15 arrest. It's not clear when he was released from jail.

Police were called to a townhouse, center, in Park Slope, Brooklyn, to help an unconscious infant in November 2021. (Google maps) © Provided by NBC News Police were called to a townhouse, center, in Park Slope, Brooklyn, to help an unconscious infant in November 2021. (Google maps)

Auster was charged with manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and endangering the welfare of a child relating to the death of his 10-month-old daughter, Ruby Auster.

Ruby died of acute intoxication from heroin and fentanyl in November while in the sole care of her father, according to the criminal complaint, filed by the Kings County District Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn.  

Auster told authorities that he had injected himself with heroin after his wife left for work on the day of his daughter’s death. He then laid in bed with Ruby to take a nap, and when we woke up he saw she was “blue, lifeless, and unresponsive," according to the complaint.

He administered Narcan, an opioid antagonist used to reverse overdose effects, called police and she was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead. A toxicology report in her autopsy found the presence of heroin and fentanyl. 

A spokesperson for the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office told NBC News the criminal case will be abated by death at a future date.

Auster’s father is best known for works such as “City of Glass,” “The Brooklyn Follies,” and “4 3 2 1,” according to The New York Times.

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