LAREDO, Texas (KTRK) — The parents of a 2-year-old girl were sentenced Friday for putting her remains in a container full of acid.
Monica Dominguez and Gerardo Zavala-Loredo were both arrested in February after police searched their apartment and found the remains of their daughter, Rebecka Zavala, in a five-gallon container hidden in a bedroom closet.
Laredo police say the parents told them they were trying to dispose of the girl's remains after she drowned without adult supervision.
Webb County's district attorney said the scene was overwhelming.
"As you can imagine, it's very difficult for all of us in law enforcement and for the first responders to be in a situation to come across a scene like we did," said District Attorney Isidro Alaniz.
Both parents pleaded guilty to tampering with evidence of a human corpse Friday.
Zavala-Loredo took a plea deal and was sentenced to 14 years in prison. Dominguez additionally pleaded guilty to endangering a child and abuse of a corpse. She will serve a total of 20 years in prison.
Dominguez had a previous probation charge from an injury to a child case in which her 9-month-old son suffered six bone fractures. Her judgment will run consecutively with a 10-year revocation sentence for violating her probation in the prior case.
According to KGNS, neither parent could be charged with murder because the state of the toddler's remains prevented authorities from determining a cause of death.
Story courtesy of ABC13.