State And Regional

Ohio mom pleads guilty in death of toddler left home alone while she went on vacation

CLEVELAND — An Ohio mother pleaded guilty in the death of her 16-month-old daughter she left alone for more than a week, according to prosecutors.

Kristel Candelario, 32, pleaded guilty to aggravated murder and endangering children, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced.

On June 6, 2023, Candelario left her daughter Jailyn Candelario alone and unattended at her home near Lorain Avenue and West 97th Street in Cleveland, according to O’Malley. She did not return until June 16, 2023, around 8 a.m.

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Upon returning, Candelario found Jailyn unresponsive and called the police, O’Malley said.

Cleveland police responded to the scene and Jailyn was pronounced deceased.

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An investigation by CPD’s Homicide Unit found that Candelario left Jailyn alone and unattended from June 6 to June 16 to vacation in Detroit, Michigan, and in Puerto Rico.

Jailyn was extremely dehydrated at the time of her death and was found in a Pack-N-Play pen on a liner soiled with urine and feces with soiled blankets, O’Malley said.

“This case is one of those truly unimaginable cases that will stick with me for many years to come,” O’Malley said. “As prosecutors, it is our job to represent the victims and today we spoke on behalf of 16-month-old Jailyn — who is no longer with us — due to the selfish decisions her mother made. This conviction today, is the first step towards justice for Jailyn.”

Candelario will be sentenced at the Cuyahoga County Justice Center on March 18.

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