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Couple Fabricates Hit-and-Run Story After Bringing Dying Toddler to CVS with 'Significant Injuries': Cops

Arizona Couple Reportedly Brought Dying Baby to CVS Pharmacy: Cops
Source: Glendale Police Department

Maria Isabel Machado Perez (left) and Francisco Javier Felix Higuera (right) charged in the death of Perez's 21-month-old son, police said.

Feb. 15 2024, Published 10:01 a.m. ET

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A couple in Arizona is facing charges after officials said the woman’s 21-month-old son was allegedly beaten to death by her boyfriend.

Around 6:40 p.m. on Feb. 8, Francisco Javier Felix Higuera and Maria Isabel Machado Perez drove the toddler to a CVS pharmacy in Glendale because he wasn’t moving or breathing, according to court records obtained by KPHO.

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Officials said the boy had bruises all over his body and cuts on his head, face and groin area. He was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police took Higuera and Perez into custody and asked how the toddler got injured. According to law enforcement officials, Higuera initially said they were in his pickup truck when they got rear-ended on the freeway 10 to 15 days prior.

However, he later admitted he lied and was covering for Perez, police said.

According to police, Perez was rear-ended by a hit-and-run driver while with her son in her Jeep Cherokee, but the infant allegedly was not in a car seat or wearing a seatbelt.

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Higuera told investigators that is how the toddler got bruises on his face. He also said the boy fell in the shower and had trouble standing at a park.

A few days before the couple drove the boy to CVS, Higuera said the boy was throwing up and not eating.


Authorities showed pictures of the victim’s injuries to Higuera, and he admitted the bruises on his cheeks were from when he forced the boy’s mouth open because he wasn’t eating since he was throwing up, court documents say.

Police spoke with Higuera the following day and showed him the boy’s autopsy results, which allegedly indicated the child was abused over a long period of time.

Higuera admitted to police that he threw the child into his crib on the day they brought him to CVS, police said.

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He stated the boy’s full diaper broke and he was covered in feces, according to court records, which also showed that is when the boy began vomiting.

Authorities also said Higuera beat the boy with a belt on his chest and backside.

Officials were able to obtain a video from Higuera’s cell phone taken the morning of Feb. 8, which showed the toddler with no bruises on his face. Another video taken around 6 p.m. allegedly showed bruises on his face and body.

Higuera was arrested and charged with first-degree murder and child abuse, officials said. Perez, police said, was arrested and charged with child abuse for allegedly allowing the abuse to happen and not seeking medical care for her son.

Both were booked into the Maricopa County jail, where Higuera was being held on a $1.5 million bond and Perez on a $500,000 bond.


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