Charges Upgraded from Child Abuse to Murder for Rifle Mother

The Rifle mother whose 5-year-old daughter died after drinking water contaminated with methamphetamine is now charged with first-degree murder, an upgrade from the original charge of child abuse resulting in death. The mother, 26-year-old Stephanie Alvarado, as well as her cousin 27-year-old Daniel Alvarado and friend Bertha Ceballos-Romo, were together at a residence on the night in December that 5-year-old Sophie Larson passed away. According to court documents, Sophie had gone to bed around 10:30 pm but had gotten up and asked her mother for a drink. Alvarado saw a bottle with clear liquid in it and gave it to her daughter. When the girl woke up soon after she displayed erratic hyper behavior. Her mother and the other adults present recognized the 5-year-old girl appeared to be high on methamphetamine. They determined they would watch her and wait for the high to go away. During that time the mother told police she went outside and smoked some methamphetamine. Several hours later after 2am, Sophie had stopped breathing at which point they drove her to the hospital where she was pronounced dead. The same day of their arrest in January, all three were released after posting bail. Sophie’s father Alec Larson has been outspoken about the case including attending Alvarado’s court appearances with family and friends, wearing shirts demanding justice for his daughter.


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