Houston police have identified the toddler who died at St. Joseph Hospital last week as Alessay Andrade, and they have charged her mother, Emma Cardona, with endangering a child.
Court documents paint a heartbreaking picture of the child's last conscious moments. They say that the child had been sick, and when her father came home from work he gave her some milk.
"He stated that he picked up the [child]," court documents say, "who said 'Daddy' and started to grab his face. He stated that her arms then went limp and her eyes rolled back in her head."
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The court documents say the child died of blunt force trauma to the head.
The documents outline shifting stories by Cardona, who is 19 and the mother of three other children. She initially told investigators the child had been born with "short-bowel" syndrome and had been vomiting and suffering from diarrhea all day.
The father of the child said he had been in contact with Cardona several times that day from his job, and that when he came home no later than 2:10 p.m. they called 911. Emergency-center logs show, however, that the 911 call did not come in until 2:49 p.m.
Investigators noticed a large bruise on the child's forehead and other bruises elsewhere on her body.