Ladson woman accused of causing baby’s death
A Ladson woman suspected of smothering her 17-month-old child in August faces homicide charges.
Lorena Contreras-Castillo, 21, of Fairview Drive, is charged with homicide by child abuse. U.S. marshals took her into custody Wednesday, Charleston County sheriff’s Maj. Jim Brady said.
According to an affidavit from a sheriff’s detective, Contreras- Castillo took her child to Medical University Hospital on Aug. 5 saying the baby had passed out.
Nurses reported that the baby was active and playful but admitted the child for observation.
The child was discharged Aug. 8.
Less than six hours later, paramedics were sent to Contreras-Castillo’s home and found the child unresponsive and not breathing.
The child was taken to Trident Hospital for treatment and died Aug. 13 at Medical University Hospital.
An extensive series of tests found no medical condition that could have caused the death, and the only explanation is an action that cut off oxygen to the brain, such as smothering, according to the affidavit.
Contreras-Castillo, who speaks only Spanish, had a bond hearing Wednesday through an interpreter.
A magistrate can’t set bail on a homicide charge, and Contreras-Castillo remains in the Charleston County jail.
Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553 or twitter.com/dmunday.