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Carmen Barahona pleads guilty, agrees to testify against husband in death of adopted daughter

Adoptive mother to spend life in prison in exchange for testimony

MIAMI – A mother accused of starving, torturing and killing her adopted daughter pleaded guilty Friday and has agreed to testify against her husband.

Under the terms of the plea deal, Carmen Barahona, 69, will be spared a death sentence and instead spend the rest of her life in prison.

Carmen Barahona (right) has agreed to testify against her husband, Jorge Barahona (left), in the death of their adopted daughter.
Carmen Barahona (right) has agreed to testify against her husband, Jorge Barahona (left), in the death of their adopted daughter.

“Today, Carmen Barahona accepted responsibilities for the atrocities she inflicted on two innocent children placed in her care and eventually adopted by her and her husband and co-defendant, Jorge Barahona,” Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said in a statement. “By allowing her to enter her guilty plea today and assist in the prosecution of her husband, we are one step closer to helping the surviving child victim in this case see justice prevail for him and his deceased twin sister, Nubia.”

Nubia Barahona was found dead on Valentine's Day 2011 in her adoptive father's truck on the side of Interstate 95 in West Palm Beach.
Nubia Barahona was found dead on Valentine's Day 2011 in her adoptive father's truck on the side of Interstate 95 in West Palm Beach.

Victor and Nubia Barahona were 10 years old when they were discovered on Valentine’s Day 2011 awash in chemicals in their adoptive father’s truck on the side of Interstate 95 in West Palm Beach. Nubia was dead, her body wrapped in plastic in the bed of the truck. Victor was barely conscious and convulsing in the front passenger seat.

Jorge Barahona, 52, faces trial in April.

“My prosecution team remains vigilant in obtaining justice against Jorge Barahona for the horrific acts he is responsible for against these innocent children,” Fernandez Rundle said.

She went on to say that Carmen Barahona’s life sentence will be deferred “until after her full and truthful cooperation” against her husband.