SUPERIOR, Ariz. — The Latest on an Arizona woman arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder in the deaths of her two small children (all times local):
Authorities say an Arizona mother of two small children who died after being left for hours in a vehicle tried to blame someone else she said was supposed to be watching them.
A narrative of events released Wednesday by the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office says there is no proof that 20-year-old Brittany Velasquez left the children with someone who was to care for them. That person’s name is redacted in the document.
Velasquez is being held on $2 million bond on suspicion of first-degree murder in the deaths Monday of her 2-year-old son and infant daughter in the mining town of Superior.
Her case was assigned to the county public defender’s office, but a specific attorney has not been named.
Authorities say an Arizona woman arrested in the deaths of her two small children was the last person to see the infant and toddler alive.
A document released Wednesday by the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office says Brittany Velasquez left the children in a car outside the family home in the mining town of Superior and went to work the day they died.
The document says the children were dead when Velasquez returned to the car nearly 14 hours later. They were strapped into car seats and wearing the same clothes they had on in the morning.
Velasquez has been arrested on suspicion of two counts of first-degree murder. Authorities have not disclosed a motive or said how the children died.
Her case has been sent to the county public defender’s office, but no specific attorney has been selected yet to represent her.
The Arizona Department of Child Safety says it made a visit in January to the home of a young woman arrested this week in the deaths of her small son and daughter and found no visible signs of child abuse or neglect.
The agency said in a statement late Tuesday that officials investigating a Jan. 5 neglect report determined Brittany Velasquez had a job and that the apartment where she then lived in the city of Mesa had everything needed for her children. The department provided her with free daycare.
Velasquez’ toddler and infant were found dead Monday in their car seats in a car outside the home of relatives in the mining town of Superior.
She 20-year-old was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder.
Authorities have not disclosed a motive or said how the children died.
A police report from January cites an unidentified family member of the Arizona mother arrested this week in the deaths of her toddler and infant as saying the woman left the children with relatives for days at a time.
The document blacks out the name of the relative in the small mining town of Superior, where the children’s bodies were found Monday night inside their car seats in a car.
The police report says the relative told officers that 20-year-old Brittany Velasquez took her $3,500 fur coat, but it was later returned and the relative did not pursue criminal charges.
The report also said Velasquez would not be investigated for child neglect or abuse until the relative stated she was no longer willing to care for the children.
Velasquez is being held on $2 million on suspicion of two charges of first-degree murder in the deaths of her son and daughter.
Authorities have not said how the children died.
Police say they alerted Arizona child protection officials about a 20-year-old mother now being held on suspicion of killing her toddler son and infant daughter, but the department says it did not find evidence of neglect or abuse.
Brittany Velasquez was arrested after her two children were found dead in car seats inside a vehicle late Monday, parked outside the family’s home in Superior, a hardscrabble mining town of about 2,900 people about 60 miles (97 kilometers) east of Phoenix. Bond for Velasquez was set at $2 million.
Autopsies were being conducted to determine causes of death of the 2-year-old boy and 10-month-old girl. The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office did not immediately disclose what evidence was found.