NATIONAL NEWS

Ohio mom charged in death of toddler left alone for 10 days, prosecutors say

Jun 26, 2023, 3:04 PM

In this booking photo provided by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department, is Kristel Candelario, ...

In this booking photo provided by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department, is Kristel Candelario, 31, of Cleveland, Ohio. Prosecutors in Ohio have announced murder charges against a woman in the death of her 16-month-old daughter, who authorities allege was left alone for 10 days while she went on vacation. (Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department via AP)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department via AP)

CLEVELAND (AP) — Prosecutors in Ohio have announced murder charges against a woman in the death of her 16-month-old daughter, who authorities say was left alone for 10 days while the woman went on vacation.

The Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office said Monday that Kristel A. Candelario, 31, was indicted last week on one count of aggravated murder, two counts of murder and one count each of felonious assault and endangering children.

Prosecutors alleged that Candelario left the child “alone and unattended” at her Cleveland home June 6 to vacation in Detroit and Puerto Rico and didn’t return until the morning of June 16. Authorities say she called police after finding the child unresponsive upon her return.

Cleveland police and fire personnel responded and the victim, who was described as “extremely dehydrated,” was pronounced deceased.

“It is unfathomable that a mother would leave her 16-month-old child alone without any supervision for 10 days to go on a vacation,” Prosecutor Michael O’Malley said in a statement.

“As parents, we are supposed to protect and care for our children,” O’Malley wrote. “Imagining this child’s suffering, during her last days of life alone, is truly horrifying and we will do everything in our power to seek justice on her behalf.”

It’s unclear whether Candelario has an attorney. Court records did not list an attorney for her and the county public defender’s office said Friday that it was not, as of that point, representing her.

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Ohio mom charged in death of toddler left alone for 10 days, prosecutors say