MODESTO (CBS13) — Jovonna Cruz, the Modesto mother accused of causing her 7-year-old son’s death earlier this month, appeared in court Monday.

Cruz was arraigned in the Stanislaus Superior Court Monday afternoon and entered a plea of not guilty to charges of charged with felony child abuse causing death. She appeared via a video feed from a different facility. Her bail was set at $250,000 and she is scheduled to appear in court on September 29.

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Charges stem from an incident on September 13. Modesto police responded to a medical aid call at an apartment in the 1900 block of Oakdale Road. At the scene, Cruz’s son, David Turner, was receiving life-saving treatment from EMTs and fire personnel. He was taken to the hospital and remained in a coma until Thursday when he was pronounced dead, according to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department.

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Thirty-five-year-old Cruz, of Modesto, was initially arrested on charges of child abuse and causing great bodily injury in connection with his injuries. But after Turner died, she’s now accused of child abuse causing death.

Cruz and Rivera (l-r) (credit: Modesto PD)

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The criminal complaint, which was updated Friday, also charges Cruz and her boyfriend, Eyvar Rivera, 41, also of Modesto, with permitting a child to suffer under circumstances likely to cause great bodily injury or death.

Read the criminal complaint here.


David Turner (credit: Brandy Blackwell)

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Police say Turner’s injuries were consistent with abuse.