Carbondale mother charged with trying to kill 2 daughters

MARIA VIVIANA ALVARADO-GOMEZ: Accused of using rat poison



GLENWOOD SPRINGS — Prosecutors on Wednesday formally charged a Carbondale woman with two counts of attempted first-degree murder after deliberation and two counts of child abuse after she allegedly fed rat poison to her two daughters June 30.

Meanwhile, the daughters’ father says the accused woman, Maria Alvarado-Gomez, has been struggling with mental issues.

“I want people to understand that she is sick,” Martin Luciano-Gonzalez said during a brief telephone interview.

Alvarado-Gomez, 32, is accused of putting rat poison in milkshakes she made for her daughters, ages 8 and 11. The two were treated and released from Valley View Hospital in Glenwood Springs.

An arrest affidavit indicates that Alvarado-Gomez also consumed poison in an attempt to take her own life, and said she didn’t want her daughters to be left alone. It said she also feared Gonzalez would take them back to Mexico, and that she would rather they be dead than live there.

According to the affidavit, the daughters noticed that the milkshakes tasted bad, and one of them spit hers out, while the other drank more.

Luciano-Gonzalez reportedly told authorities Alvarado-Gomez had been getting counseling before the incident and had been in touch with Mind Springs Health, a local mental health care provider. A friend of hers told police she had been depressed for a few days and was supposed to be on medication but may have been on and off of it.

A doctor at Valley View told an investigator she had been provided no medications and showed no signs of psychosis.

Luciano-Gonzalez said by telephone that Alvarado-Gomez had gone to Grand Junction for treatment of a mental problem.

Prosecutors filed charges during a brief court appearance by Alvarado-Gomez Wednesday. Deputy public defender Sara Steele waived Alvarado-Gomez’s right to be advised on the charges and their potential penalties.

If convicted of the attempted murder charges, Alvarado-Gomez could face a presumptive prison sentence of eight to 24 years in prison on each of the two counts. The two other charges involve child abuse allegedly causing serious bodily injury, and each has a presumptive sentencing range of four to 16 years.

Alvarado-Gomez is being held in lieu of $300,000 bond at the Garfield County Jail.


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