New Mexico Mother Indicted in Son's Beating Death

Jan 16, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — An Albuquerque mother has been indicted on several charges after police say she repeatedly kicked her 9-year-old son, resulting in his death.

Prosecutors announced the indictment of 38-year-old Synthia Varela-Casaus yesterday. A formal arraignment has yet to be scheduled.

A grand jury handed up the charges Tuesday. They include one count of child abuse resulting in death, five counts of child abuse and one count of tampering with evidence.

Varela-Casaus initially told police her son injured himself falling off of a bouncing toy horse. She later admitted to getting angry and kicking the child.

Police arrived at the family's home Dec. 27 and found the boy unresponsive. They said the boy had suffered multiple current and past injuries.

The death of Omaree Varela has reignited concerns about staffing levels within the state's child welfare agency.