Had she known what would happen to her precious one-year-old Scarlett, she wouldn’t have left the house at all.
It was a bight and clear summer day in San Bernardino County in California when Scarlett’s mother, whose name the District Attorney did not disclose, had to run to the store.
With no immediate family with her, she asked the neighbors for help. She found Daniel Ruiz and his girlfriend. While the women were away, Daniel, left alone with Scarlett, walked over to where she was playing on the floor.
What happened then was baffling: He put his foot on Scarlett’s chest and began to press down on her chest, “applying most of his 230 pounds of weight on her body,” said Kathleen DiDonato, lead deputy district attorney who prosecuted the case.
As Scarlett gasped for breath helplessly on the floor, Daniel opened the TV and flicked through the channels. And when he heard the two women returning, “he tapped Scarlett on the cheek, trying to get her to snap out of it,” the DA’s office said. When he found that couldn’t, he ran outside and told them that Scarlett was having a seizure.
Scarlett’s mother rushed her to the hospital, but the one-year-old baby died a short time afterward. Two days later during an autopsy, her injuries were discovered, and the authorities arrested Daniel. At the beginning he denied the accusations.
Eventually he relented and admitted that “he purposely stepped on Scarlett,” and the reason he did it was because he was stressed and “that he felt the ladies were taking advantage of him.”
Even more disturbing is what the prosecutor’s statement said, which was that Daniel “actually felt better stepping on the victim as he sat there watching television.”
This may be an isolated case, but mommies, are you certain that the people you turn to for help can be trusted? How sure are you that if you leave your children to their care, nothing terrible is going to happen?
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