A North Carolina husband was put behind bars on Friday after he made a disturbing call to local police.

According to the News & Observer, it started when Matthew Phelps and Lauren Ashley-Nicole Phelps, a young couple from northeast Raleigh, were inside their home late Thursday evening.

Matthew, a student focusing on missions and evangelism, decided to take some cold medicine before laying down for bed, in order to help him get some sleep.

But when he awoke, his life turned into a real-life nightmare.


According to the Daily Mail, Matthew called police around 1:10 am on Friday after he made a gruesome discovery. His wife of less than a year, Lauren, was dead.

The frantic husband told the dispatcher:

“I had a dream and then I turned on the lights and she’s dead on the floor … There’s blood all over me, and there’s a bloody knife on the bed. I think I did it.”


Matthew told the police that his wife wasn’t breathing, and panicked about what he thought he had done. The newlywed said:

“I can’t believe I did this. I can’t believe I did this.”

The young husband also told the dispatcher that the blood on him had dried and that he was afraid to approach his wife, according to the News & Observer.

Then he revealed his excuse for allegedly murdering his wife.


Matthew said that he had simply taken too much of his go-to sleep aid:

“I took more medicine that I should have. I took Coricidin Cough and Cold because I know it can make you feel good and sometimes I can’t sleep at night.”

According to their website, Coricidin Cough and Cold is designed to treat cold symptoms in people with high blood pressure, though it’s unclear if Matthew had blood pressure problems.

Like many cough medicines, Coricidin Cough and Cold contains Dextromethorphan, an ingredient that can cause dizziness and nausea at normal doses. When taken at overdose levels, the ingredient becomes seriously dangerous.

Arkansas Poison and Drug Information Center/Facebook

According to Medline Plus, Dextromethorphan taken in high amounts can cause serious symptoms, including “changes in vision, difficulty breathing, fast heartbeat, hallucinating, seizures, coma.”

Though it remains unclear how much of the cold medicine the newlywed actually took.

Coricidin Cough and Cold is so heavily abused in the United States that it has its own street name — Triple C.

Congrats to my friends Matt and Lauren on their engagement!!

Posted by Josh Salley on Sunday, May 29, 2016

Police revealed that his 29-year-old wife, Lauren, was found “mortally stabbed” at their townhouse in Raleigh. She was taken to a nearby hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Matthew, who had no prior criminal record, was charged with murder.

He is currently being held without bond at the Wake County Jail, and will make his first court appearance on Tuesday, according to the News & Observer.

For now, Lauren’s friends and family continue to mourn.

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