Mesa Man Charged in Death of Fiancee's 4-Year-Old Daughter
When a Mexico City man living in Mesa was first questioned by police about the death of his fiancee's 4-year-old daughter, he told them she hit her head when she fell down at a pool in their apartment complex. Turns out, the girl was probably never at the pool, and now he's been charged in her death.
Jose Luis Gonzalez-Dominguez, 21, was arrested Monday -- two days after his fiancee's daughter was found unresponsive in the couple's Mesa apartment -- and charged with one count of child abuse.
According to court documents obtained by New Times, Gonzalez-Dominguez told police he'd taken the girl -- and her three siblings -- to a community pool at their apartment complex. He claimed the 4-year-old fell and hit her head before he took the children home.
About two hours later, about 9 p.m., Gonzalez-Dominguez called his fiancee -- who was at work at the time -- to report that the child was having trouble breathing. He briefly gave the child CPR, and put her to bed before falling asleep himself.
At no point did he bother to call for medical help.
The child's mother got home about 11:30 p.m. and found her daughter to be "very weak, pale, and had shallow breathing." The baby was dead before she ever got to a hospital.
Despite Gonzalez-Dominguez's tale of the child hitting her head while playing at the pool, police later determined that the girl probably never even went to the pool.
The pool, the apartment's manager later told police, was closed the day Gonzalez-Dominguez claims he took the children to swim, and surveillance footage of the pool didn't show him or the children the day of the girl's death.
The investigation also found that neighbors heard yelling followed by a child crying about 9 p.m. -- about the same time Gonzalez-Dominguez called his fiancee to report the child's difficulty breathing.
The autopsy of the child found that the child died from blunt-force trauma to the head and body. The death was ruled a homicide.
Because of his less-than-legal status, Gonzalez-Dominguez is being held without bail.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.