Police: 'Strikingly unemotional' aunt refused to help dying girl
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) Court documents obtained Tuesday by Eyewitness News include accusations of ongoing abuse and neglect that led to the death of a 2-year-old girl.
Karla Isidro's mother moved back to Mexico without Karla or Karla's sister. The children were left in the care of Karla's aunt, 20-year-old Wendy Guadalupe Gomez, in Bakersfield.
Karla died Sept. 20 after her aunt refused to provide care for the girl's multiple injuries, according to a police report filed with Kern County court.
The toddler was in Gomez's custody from June to September. Roughly a month before her death, Karla hit her head so hard that she vomited repeatedly and couldn't maintain her balance. The girl's autopsy showed a long fracture across the back of her skull.
The doctor with the coroner's office said Karla likely would have survived if her aunt provided medical care immediately after the head injury, according to the police investigation. But, Gomez refused to call for help or take the girl to a hospital, according to the report.
Gomez told police she was an immigrant not here legally and was afraid of being deported, according to the report. Gomez also expressed concern that Karla would be taken from her if she contacted authorities, because she wasn't the child's legal guardian.
Police also alleged Gomez shook Karla violently on multiple occasions and tied her up during an hours-long car ride.
Police described Gomez as "strikingly unemotional" when giving a statement to investigators following Karla's death.
The coroner's office reported Karla was just 16 pounds when she died.
The medical examiner also noted in court documents that Karla's body had bruising and blistering, consistent with long-term binding. The examiner also stated a belief that the girl's fall, which resulted in the head injury, was likely "an assisted fall."
Gomez is charged with second-degree murder, torture and willful cruelty to child. She has pleaded not guilty to all charges. If convicted, Gomez could receive a life sentence in prison.