A husband and wife have been charged with murder in the death of a toddler this past Sunday.
Hall County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Derreck Booth revealed how detectives arrested Juan Martinez, 31, and Nancy Martinez, 32, for the death of 2-year-old Valeria Jordan Garfias.
Booth stated how emergency responders with Hall County Fire Services found the child unresponsive at a residence on Bennett Circle just before 2 p.m.
“Hall County Fire Services transported the victim to Northeast Georgia Medical Center following the initial medical call about the victim,” Booth said. “The child was flown to a Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Hospital where she later died.”
Due to the nature of the child’s injuries, investigators were immediately notified. Booth revealed that the little girl had traumatic brain injury and other internal injuries, but he declined to give more specific details until an autopsy can be completed. He did not give a time frame for said results.
Booth stated the child had been left in the care of the Martinezes while her parents went to work. He said the two couples knew one another but was not clear on what their relationship was exactly. Booth also said the minor children of Juan and Nancy Martinez were home at the time the toddler was injured.
“Those children have since been taken in by the Hall County Division of Family and Children’s Services,” Booth said.
Both Juan and Nancy Martiez each have been charged with felony murder and cruelty to children in the first degree.
In other news, a mom of a two-year-old and her boyfriend have been arrested for second-degree murder after the child was reported missing and whose remains were later found in a remote area of Mississippi this past month.
Lanaya Cardwell and her live-in boyfriend, Philip Gardner, have since been charged with second-degree murder in Neveah Allen’s death. According to an arrest report released late Wednesday, police reveal what happened exactly before Neveah went missing.
Arrest documents reveal that Neveah was with her mom as Cardwell was getting ready for work, according to WBRZ-TV and The Advocate newspaper. At some point, the 2-year-old picked up her mom’s contact lenses and Cardwell reportedly punched the child in the stomach, causing her to fall and strike her head on a cabinet.
The documents then note that the mom picked up the child and was yelling at her. Gardner informed police that Neveah had a bruise on her forehead and that he then took the mom to work — but when he returned with Neveah, she laid down and wouldn’t eat and became unresponsive. Allegedly, Gardner was watching two other young children at the home at the time.
The documents stated how Gardner attempted to revive Neveah but couldn’t. He then put her body in a suitcase, drove the other two children with him to Mississippi and buried her in the woods.
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