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Mother accused of leaving 6-year-old alone in burning apartment pleads guilty to child neglect

Erica Rosello, 32, to serve 30 months probation

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MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – A woman accused of leaving her 6-year-old daughter inside their burning west Miami-Dade apartment earlier this year pleaded guilty Thursday to child neglect.

Erica Rosello, 32, will serve 30 months of probation, although the judge gave her a stern warning that she will be going to jail if she appears her courtroom ever again.

Rosello will be allowed supervised visits with her daughter and will be fitted with a SCRAM bracelet, which detects and reports alcohol consumption. 

Police said the child was alone at the Versailles Gardens apartment complex on Flagler Street and 94th Avenue the night of Feb. 18 when the fire started.

Police said firefighters broke a window in the home and found the girl in a hot bedroom filled with smoke.

According to an arrest report, Rosello was in the hallway of the building when a neighbor saw smoke coming out of her front door. The witness told police that he asked Rosello if something was on fire and she said, "No, it's not a fire."

When asked if anyone was inside, she said only her daughter, the neighbor said.

Police said the neighbor pulled the fire alarm and called 911, but he was unable to get inside before firefighters arrived and extinguished the flames.

Authorities said the girl was unable to speak because of smoke inhalation, but firefighters were able to pull her out of the apartment through the window and take her to Nicklaus Children's Hospital.

According to detectives, Rosello quickly left after firefighters pulled her daughter out. They said she called her mother to find out about her daughter's condition, and the woman convinced Rosello to come to the hospital and cooperate with the investigation.

Rosello's mother, Angelica Tabio, has been given custody of the child.

Records show that Rosello has previously been arrested on child neglect and DUI charges.

Her mother told Local 10 News that Rosello suffers from depression and has stopped taking medication for it because she doesn't like the way it makes her feel.

If Rosello violates the terms of her probation she faces up to five years in prison.


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