A mother of two toddlers, Christina Carlson, 38, pleaded guilty to second degree murder and criminal mistreatment following the death of her 19-month-old daughter. Carlson, a member of the Tulalip Tribes, also faces charges in the U.S. District Court in Seattle for neglecting her 33-month-old daughter.
On Oct. 8, 2012 emergency crews were called to the Tulalip Tribal Reservation to find Carlson performing CPR on her 19-month-old daughter, who was unconscious, not breathing and covered in urine and feces. Her second child was found strapped in a car seat of a nearby vehicle, also unresponsive and covered in human waste. The elder daughter was transported to the hospital and later recovered.
An investigation revealed that Carlson had been living in the car with the two girls and left to use a phone for several hours. Carlson admitted in her plea agreement she was attempting to obtain drugs for personal use and when she returned she asked neighbors to call 911 because her youngest daughter was unresponsive.
While the prosecution and defense are recommending a prison sentence of eight to 13 years, the U.S. District Judge James L. Robart can impose any sentence up to maximum life in prison. Since Jan. 2013, Carlson has been in federal custody at the Federal Detention Center at SeaTac, Wash.
The sentencing is scheduled for July 21, 2014.