Owyhee County, ID, United States (4E) – A 29-year-old mother from Homedale, Idaho who was initially accused of burning the body of her young daughter to destroy evidence, has now been charged with first-degree murder.
Owyhee County Prosecutor’s Office said Monday that Veronica T. Herrera is set to be arraigned Tuesday.
Herrera allegedly burned her two-year-old daughter, Nakita, in a burn barrel at their home on August 15 and she is also suspected of killing the toddler.
Police reports stated that Herrera confessed to authorities, a few days after the incident, saying that she did something bad and “that her child was hurt and that she made it worse.”
Herrera informed officers that her child died after hitting her head while potty training.
According to court documents, the mother, who panicked about the possibility of losing custody of her other children once police discovered the truth, decided to burn the girl’s body in the barrel located outside the house the next day.
Reports stated that the fire burned for almost two days.
Last September, Herrera pleaded not guilty to the charge of destruction of evidence.
Herrera, who is scheduled to start jury trial in January, also faces a misdemeanor charge of failure to notify the coroner or police of a death and four counts of felony injury to a child.
She is being held on a $1 million bond.
First-degree murder is punishable by up to life in prison while each count of felony injury to child could mean a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.