STOCKTON (CBS13) — After allegedly stomping, kicking and slamming her four-year-old stepdaughter to the ground, a Stockton woman now faces homicide and child abuse charges.
Stockton police say the baby was brought to a local hospital with severe injuries on Sunday and died Tuesday.
The details are quite disturbing, but according to court records and the toddler’s biological mother, the alleged abuse was going on for a while.
“My children don’t deserve what they have been through,” said Malinda Beach, who lives in Manteca.
Beach said it’s been an emotional 24 hours and she still cannot believe her four-year-old daughter, Serenity, is gone. According to police, the toddler died while in the care of Zulma Chavez-Ventura, 21.
“A mother would not ever kill her child, or even lay a finger on her child. That woman was a monster,” Beach said.
Investigators say the little girl was rushed to the hospital with substantial traumatic injuries. She was unresponsive and had a lump on her head.
Court documents reveal Chavez-Ventura first called the girl’s father, Kevin Carames, and waited for him to get home before calling 9-1-1.
“Who does that to a baby?” Beach said.
Court documents also show Chavez-Ventura and Carames lied about the four-year-old’s injuries, saying she ran into a ladder attached to a bunk bed. Chavez-Ventura later confessed to causing the injury but said that it was an accident.
Neighbors said the family just moved into the neighborhood a few months ago.
Stockton mom Brittany Gonzales lost her toddler, Jaxson last year. The woman charged with abuse that resulted in his death was also his stepmother.
“It’s unfortunate because you know, I always hear ‘the stepmom was loving, there was no way she could have done this,’ but you don’t know what goes on behind closed doors,” said Gonzales.
Gonzales is offering emotional support for Beach. Beach’s other children, 4 and 5-year-old boys, are now in the custody of Child Protective Services.
Chavez-Ventura is scheduled to make her first court appearance on Thursday.