Woman, boyfriend arrested in death of 4-year-old daughter - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Woman, boyfriend arrested in death of 4-year-old daughter

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Melissa Centeno, Sergio Ortiz Melissa Centeno, Sergio Ortiz

Phoenix Police have arrested a woman and her boyfriend for child abuse after her 4-year-old daughter dies.

Sunday morning, police were called to an apartment complex near 70th Ave and Indian School for a child not breathing. The victim's mother, Melissa Centeno was on the phone with 911 and her boyfriend Sergio Ortiz was performing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on the child. 

Betzy Rodriguez-Centeno was unresponsive and paramedics rushed her to the hospital. They noticed numerous bruising on the child and a distended abdomen. Blood tests came up abnormal, which indicates internal injuries. Betzy could not be revived and died of her injuries.

According to police, 19-year-old Centeno punched the girl in the abdomen last Friday. She became nauseous and was vomiting, but Centeno allegedly did nothing.

On Saturday, 22-year-old Ortiz watched the victim while Centeno went to work. Centeno told detectives that she noticed bruising on Betzy's face Saturday night that had not been there Saturday morning.

Ortiz denied causing the bruises to Betzy's face, but detectives say his story that she fell in the bathtub wasn't consistent with her injuries.

Centeno and Ortiz were booked into jail on charges of child abuse. Additional charges are pending an autopsy.

A 1-year-old child shared by Centeno and Ortiz was turned over to the care of CPS. Police say Betzy was Centeno's child from another relationship.

The investigation is ongoing.

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