Judge Rejects Negligent Homicide Charge

Following the events that unfolded at the A and W Trailer Park off North Avenue in GRand Junction Thursday, police arrested 22-year-old Lusero Saucedo–Morales on charges of criminally negligent homicide. According to police Saucedo–Morales was backing out of her driveway when she struck and killed a little boy who she was caring for at the time. However a judge Friday says there was not enough probable cause to support the charge of criminally negligent homicide. Grand Junction police officers are not hesitating to say what happened at the trailer park is a tragedy for all involved, but investigators could not excuse the death of a 20-month-old boy as just an accident. According to police Lusero Saucedo–Morales placed three children into the back seat of a Ford Explorer. A one-year-old, a 20-month-old and a four-year-old. Police say the one-year-old was the only child properly restrained in a car seat. The woman allegedly told police she placed the 20-month-old in the middle seat with a seatbelt. Police say Saucedo–Morales then left the vehicle for three to five minutes. When she returned she began backing out of the driveway, that's when she struck 20-month-old Nathanael Sandoval. He died instantly. Police arrested the babysitter on a charge of criminally negligent homicide, but Friday Mesa County Court Judge Craig Henderson did not sign the arrest affidavit allowing Saucedo–Morales to go free. Police are looking into whether other criminal charges apply in this case, but say the fact that Saucedo–Morales is an undocumented citizen and could be a flight risk played a role in the decision to charge her so soon after the child's death. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been notified of her status, however she was still released from the Mesa County jail Friday.


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