The girl's mother Melanie Garcia, 21, and her ex-boyfriend Matthew Carrillo, 23, currently face a serious charge - injury to a child causing serious bodily injury - but prosecution is considering one far more serious charge: capital murder.
Melanie Nicole Garcia, 21, is accused of beating her 4-year-old daughter. She claims her ex-boyfriend killed her child.
Garcia claimed that, in anger, Carrillo forced Kayla to pull her pants and underwear down and brace herself by holding the couch. When Carrillo hit Kayla, she dropped to the floor, at which point he picked her up by one arm and beat her mercilessly with his belt, said Garcia. Carrillo forced Kayla to lift a phone book and a box for an extended period before slapping her once more and shoving her to the ground, according to Garcia. When she crashed to the floor, she received a damaging blow to the head.
Garcia called an ambulance hours later. Kayla was taken to Christus Santa Rosa Children's Hospital on May 7. She had bruises all over her body, burn marks and a brutal head injury, reports KSAT. Garcia and Carrillo initially claimed that Kayla fell from a wagon, but doctors saw immediately that the child's injuries couldn't have stemmed from such an event.
In court, Garcia claimed that Carrillo forced her to say that Kayla fell from a toy wagon. Garcia listened, according to her testimony, because she was afraid of Carrillo and his family.
Kayla died around 6:30 p.m. on May 9, after being flown to University Hospital's pediatric intensive care unit.
Garcia was released after agreeing to take a lie detector test and testifying against Carrillo, reports San Antonio Express-News. She may still face charges.
Carrillo asked for release claiming lack of probable cause, which Judge Andrew Carruthers rejected. Carruthers did, however, reduce his bond from $200,000 to $100,000.