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A Pennsylvania Woman Tied Up Her 3-Year-Old Stepdaughter and Beat Her. The Toddler Died Weighing Just 29 Pounds.

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Source: Allegheny County; UNSPLASH

Sep. 21 2023, Published 12:16 p.m. ET

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A Pennsylvania woman was convicted in connection with the death of her 3-year-old stepdaughter, who suffered horrific abuse, authorities said.

On July 3, a judge in Allegheny County found Laura Ramriez, 31, guilty of multiple counts that included aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of a child, unlawful restraint and conspiracy to commit homicide for the death of the toddler, Bella Seachrist, Trib Live reported.

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Ramriez was sentenced to life in prison on September 20, Penn Live reported.

According to court records, Ramriez was the partner of the young victim’s father, Jose Salazar-Ortiz Sr., 32.

On June 9, 2020, Bella was found unresponsive at the family’s Oakmont home and she was transported to an area hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

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An autopsy determined the child died from malnutrition, child abuse and neglect and suffered what a criminal complaint said was blunt force trauma.

The criminal complaint, obtained by Trib Live, states Ramriez used shoelaces to tie the little girl to a staircase, beat her with a wooden spoon, and isolated her in a closet.

The defendant was also accused of forcing the little girl to sit on a potty chair for so long that she suffered swollen and purple feet.

At the time of Bella’s death, she weighed 29 pounds, the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office said.

Salazar-Ortiz, the defendant’s partner and child’s father, was found guilty in the spring of third-degree murder, aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of a child, and conspiracy, according to Trib Live.

He was recently sentenced to up to 66 years behind bars, WTAE reported.

Ramirez's 23-year-old sister, Alexis Herrera, was charged with homicide and other crimes in connection with Bella's death and is scheduled to go on trial early next year.

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