Mother charged in son's death had history
WEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Authorities have arrested a South Florida woman in connection to the homicide of a 11-month-old son.
Miami-Dade Police booked Catalina Bruno into the Miami-Dade County jail Friday morning. She faces a charge of aggravated manslaughter.
Investigators searched the home of the deceased child, situated on the 1000 block of Southwest 150th Place Thursday night. Detectives said earlier that afternoon, the child was found unresponsive and taken to Kendall Regional Medical Center.
According to authorities, it wasn't until Bruno's husband asked where the child was that she recalled she had left her son, Bryan Osceola, in the hot car for an undetermined amount of time. Doctors said the boy's body temperature was 109 degrees when he reached the hospital. He was pronounced dead later that evening.
The news left nearby residents stunned. "I was really surprised cause this is a really nice neighborhood. Nothing really happens here, like I said, It's really quiet here, and everyone here knows each other. It's really sad," said neighbor John Carlos Reyes.
A friend arrived to Bruno's house to leave a note. She did not want to show her face on camera but said of Bruno, "She's good. She's a really good woman."
Bruno, however, has many priors with the law. In November 2012, Bruno was arrested for child neglect and DUI after police found her "passed out, asleep behind the wheel of her vehicle." They also found "an infant child to the right of the driver's seat with his head down between the front seats."
The trooper in that case took the 5-month-old child and gave it to Bruno's sister. There were also several cases that were not prosecuted. Bruno was also arrested in 2007 for disorderly intoxication and in 2009 for cocaine possession.
Family and friends walked out of her first hearing Friday not in the mood to talk to waiting media. "No comment," said a woman walking next to another woman who covered her face with a jacket.
Regarding her priors, Bruno's attorney, Frank Gaviria, said, "Again, we were not the attorneys on those particular cases. We don't know the underlying facts. We'd like to focus, right now, on this particular case, and we're in the process now of finding out how this terrible tragedy occurred."
It remains unknown if the Department of Children and Families was ever advised of the issues with Bruno. DCF released the following statement on Friday morning: "We can confirm we have a history with this family, but by Florida State statute, we cannot get into details at this time," said DCF Spokeswoman Lissette Valdes-Valle.
Bruno is being held on $10,000 bond. Gaviria set a bond court hearing with a judge for Saturday in hopes of getting her out on bond. "We're gonna have court tomorrow, and we're seeking to get her released," said the lawyer.
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