A Colorado babysitter has been charged with first degree murder in the death of a toddler in her care last month.
In an affidavit for her arrest, Denise Cordova, 47, told investigators that the 23-month-old girl was injured when she fell face first from her stroller. However, doctors said it would have been "physically impossible" for the girl's injuries to have occurred that way, as reported by KUSA.
Cordova Said Toddler Fell from Stroller as She Attempted to Stand Up
Cordova said the toddler, identified as Anaiah Quintana, had attempted to stand up from the stroller while they were out for a walk, but investigators said that a motion-activated camera on a neighbor's house did not capture them walking by during the time Cordova said they were out. The camera did trigger on traffic passing by on the street, police said.
The babysitter called the child's mother at about 3 p.m. on January 31 to say something had happened to the girl. When the mother arrived at her Conejos County home, she found Cordova holding her daughter, who did not appear to be breathing, on the sofa.
Cordova Claimed Bruises on Child were from Her Trying to Keep Child Awake After Fall
The toddler was flown to Children's Hospital in Colorado Springs and died from a "severe" traumatic brain injury three days later. According to KRDO, the little girl suffered from a subdural hemorrhage or severe swelling of the brain and had significant bruising to the child's face, forehead, and on the inside of both ears.
According to the affidavit, Cordova told first responders she kept the child awake after the fall by hitting her on the back "repeatedly" and that if they found marks on the child, "that's where they came from."
The first responders said they smelled alcohol coming from the babysitter. Investigators also looked at Cordova's text messages and said the timing did not "flow consistently," KUSA said.
Cordova, who has also been charged with child abuse and is being held on a $1 million bond, is due in court on Friday.