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New Port Richey toddler found naked, filthy; woman faces neglect charges

NEW PORT RICHEY — A 47-year-old woman faces charges of child neglect after authorities found her 18-month-old granddaughter naked and covered in filth at her home, according to New Port Richey police.

Diana Casamento was arrested Saturday night and taken into custody. It wasn't immediately clear if Casamento remained behind bars Sunday.

A woman called police to Casamento's home around 10 p.m. Saturday after stopping by to drop off a child seat. When the woman arrived at the house, she found the home had no power, the front door was open and Casamento was "semi-responsive" in the bathroom, according to the arrest report.

Officers who responded to the home found the child on the floor in the living room, naked from the waist down and covered in tomato sauce.

The toddler also had fecal matter on her buttocks, the report said.

Casamento was allegedly in the bedroom, standing with her back to the door and "staring out into space." Officers said Casamento had a dazed look on her face, her eyes were half-closed and she spoke unintelligibly.

When officers asked Casamento where the child was, she gave several wrong locations and even stepped right over the girl while looking for her. Casamento allegedly continued to give different locations for the child even as one of the officers held the toddler.

"The defendant never saw her," according to the report.

Casamento later fell asleep after an officer asked her to take a seat. She had a large hematoma on the left side of her forehead from a fall she had suffered earlier in the evening, according to the report.

Officers also found a broken glass jar of tomato sauce in the kitchen. They soon arrested Casamento.

It wasn't immediately clear what became of the child.

New Port Richey toddler found naked, filthy; woman faces neglect charges 05/24/09 [Last modified: Monday, May 25, 2009 10:26am]
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