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Girl 'screamed and cried until she was dead,' Miami police say

MIAMI — Trapped in a bathtub, his hands and feet bound, 10-year-old Victor Barahona could only listen through a wall as his adoptive parents beat his sister to death, according to police.

Nubia, his twin, was struck repeatedly by their adoptive parents, Jorge and Carmen Barahona, "while she screamed and cried until she was dead,'' Miami-Dade police detectives reported in an arrest warrant unsealed Monday.

The chilling document was released as Miami-Dade's top cop and prosecutor announced at a news conference that Jorge and Carmen Barahona will face charges of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and child neglect. The warrant also raises further questions about when Nubia died and whether a state child welfare agency investigation could have prevented the little girl's death. The arrest warrant, drafted last week, pinpointed Nubia's fatal injuries as having occurred "on or about Feb. 11"— or one day after a therapist called a Department of Children and Families abuse hotline to say the twins were bound hand and foot all day, released only to eat. Law enforcement officials close to the case, however, say the fatal beating could have happened earlier.

Nubia's body was found on Valentine's Day in the flatbed of Jorge Barahona's pest-control truck, drenched in toxic chemicals. Her twin was found hours earlier in the pickup's cab, burned by caustic chemicals, convulsing, but still alive. He is recovering at a therapeutic foster home after being released from Jackson Memorial Hospital's burn unit.

Victor's statement to police was key in preparing the charges against the Barahonas. An autopsy found that Nubia died from blunt-force trauma, according to a warrant. "This is, in my experience, one of the saddest commentaries on the human condition that I've ever seen,'' Miami-Dade police Director Jim Loftus said.

Girl 'screamed and cried until she was dead,' Miami police say 03/07/11 [Last modified: Monday, March 7, 2011 10:22pm]
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