DALLAS – The mother of a 4-year-old boy, whose naked body was found on a South Texas beach last year, admitted to authorities that she beat him, and denied him medical care after he suffered a head injury from running into a wall, then drove to Galveston in the middle of the night and dumped the body in the water, according to the court documents.
Galveston police identified the child as Jayden Alexander Lopez. Authorities had named him “Little Jacob” after no one came forward to report him missing.
Galveston police chief Vernon Hale announced Wednesday that the child’s mother, Rebecca Rivera, and her friend Dania Amezquita-Gomez, was arrested and accused of fabricating or tampering with physical evidence.
A statement says, Rivera, in an interview on Tuesday, told authorities she woke up in the middle of the night after her son had died, took his body to her car and drove to Galveston with her other young child and Amezquita-Gomez.
According to an affidavit, she said that her dead son in the water because he went to the beach earlier, and he found the water.
Last month, in an interview with the government, Amezquita-Gomez is recognized in the car, but give no other details about where they were going or about the dead child in the vehicle, according to the affidavit. They stated that they are too drunk to remember the information.
Rivera admitted that she abused the boy, saying “she was stressed out and took this on by Jayden striking him with” everything I could find,'” according to the court documents.
Rivera told authorities that about two weeks before the boy’s death, he had bumped into a wall, causing a head injury. Rivera told the police that they used alcohol for cleansing of the damage, but she and her girlfriend began to set, causing the alcohol to spill on the child’s face.
According to the court documents, she said her child’s face began to swell, and the next two weeks his health deteriorated.” He has reportedly complained of abdominal pain and was visibly more lethargic, the mother told the police.
Rivera also said that the police is her friend and the guilt of the child, or there are problems in the relationship of the couple, the affidavit says.
The jail records do not list lawyers for the women.
Bryan Gaines, a council of senior agent of the FBI, called the crime “horrible” at a press conference Wednesday announcement of the arrests.
“No one reported Jayden missing. No one was looking for Jayden. Jayden had no advocate other than us,” he said. “Someone took a beautiful, innocent child and filleted in the ocean as if he was a piece of trash.”
The researchers took the unusual step of releasing a photo of the face of the dead boy earlier this year, in the hope that it would generate new leads about his identity. The authorities had earlier released a sketch of the child with a phone number to call with tips. The police on Wednesday said the tips led to a possible name for the boy and a DNA comparison led to the positive identification.
Lois Gibson, a forensic creator of the sketch, said she was at home when she heard the news of a break in the case.
“I cried, I cried of relief,” says Gibson, who works as a forensic artist at the Houston Police Department.