That old saw about divorce being hardest on the kids almost turned fatal in the case of Nyesha Hall-Gonzalez, 28.
She's accused of burying a Carmelo Ortiz-Hall, her two-year-old son, under tumbleweeds and leaving him to die in an El Paso County field because of her desire to kill herself -- and her belief that no one would want him if she followed through with this act.
As reported by the 7News, Hall-Gonzalez was in the midst of a divorce from Carmelo Ortiz-Aponte, with whom she had two children -- Carmelo, her husband's namesake, and an infant. Last Friday, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by the Colorado Springs Gazette, Hall-Gonzalez told a friend that she wanted to commit suicide and take the younger Carmelo with her, because "no one would want him after she killed herself."
Shy of 8 a.m. the following morning, at a time when Ortiz-Aponte had their baby with him, Hall-Gonzalez was spotted by a state trooper carrying a toddler in her arms along a patch of Interstate 25 near Pueblo County. No action was taken at that time, but a few hours later, a 911 caller reported seeing a woman wearing a nightgown and wandering near a white SUV. Officers soon found her, barefoot, scratched and uncommunicative.
Because of the earlier sighting, and the fact that no children were present even though the vehicle contained items associated with kids, a frantic search was initiated -- and it went on for hours. Finally, at about 1 p.m., a police dog led El Paso County sheriff's deputies to little Carmelo. He had been buried under about four feet of tumbleweeds clad in a diaper and swaddled in Hall-Gonzalez's dress and coat.
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The younger Carmelo was found to be in surprisingly good condition considering his ordeal. Meanwhile, Hall-Gonzalez was arrested on suspicion of attempted first-degree murder, among other charges.
Look below to see a larger version of Hall-Gonzalez's mug shot.
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