Grieving father’s message to all parents
A grieving father is urging parents to make sure their "door is always open" after losing his teenage daughter to a suspected drug overdose.
Leah Spengler, 16, died in non suspicious circumstances at a Wyndham Vale home late Sunday night.
Her dad, Andrew Spengler, wants other parents to learn from his regrets so they do not have to live with his heartbreak.
"Make sure to let your kids know the door is always open to them," he told the Herald Sun.
"When she started bringing drugs home, I took a hard nose approach. We have a three-year-old and I said I couldn't have it.
"I probably neglected her (Leah) a bit and now I have learnt the hard way."
Leah was found non responsive by police and paramedics inside a Brookside Dr home about 10.30pm on Sunday.
While toxicology results are yet to be released, her death is being treated as a suspected drug overdose.
Mr Spengler, of Point Cook, said his daughter's life began to spiral from age 13.
First it was staying out late, next it was trying a cigarette and soon she developed a full blown ice addiction.
Mr Spengler had barely seen his daughter over the past 12 months.
She was frequently reported missing to police but had shown signs of returning to her former "cheeky" self.
Mr Spengler said "one little mistake" can take a young life down a path of no return.
"I loved her," he said.
"She started to make the wrong decisions when boys came into the picture.
"She was trying to impress and then it all just spiralled.
"The last three-and-a-bit years have been a complete rollercoaster.
"She used to be like any other child."
A 19-year-old male believed to be Leah's former boyfriend was arrested at the home and quizzed over her death.
However he has since been released and no charges laid.
Police located "marks on her body" and asked if her father if Leah suffered from epilepsy or seizures.
Mr Spengler said his mother died of epilepsy though did not believe Leah had the condition.
He said his life was forever changed by his daughter's death and all he could do was ride "the ups and downs".
"It's constantly on my mind," he said.
Leah had two sisters, aged 3 and 19.
Homicide Squad detectives handed the investigation into her death to local detectives after the autopsy result was handed down late Monday.