Police: 4-year-old tortured, beaten to death after mother shoots up heroin

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GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas — A mother has admitted to beating her 4-year-old daughter to death while high on heroin.

KTVT reports that Jeri Quezada said her boyfriend also played a part in the death of Leiliana Wright. Quezada faces charges of injury to a child. Her boyfriend has not yet been charged.

Leiliana died of blunt force trauma to the head and abdomen.

Police say when they were called on March 13, Leiliana was not breathing and had bruising from head to toe. At first, Quezada, 30, told police her daughter got hurt falling in the shower.

Eventually, though, police say she admitted to shooting heroin and then repeatedly hitting the little girl on March 12 with a belt and a bamboo stick after the child drank her 18-month-old brother’s juice. Quezada also blamed her boyfriend, Charles Phifer.

Quezada told police that Phifer tied the girl up in a closet with her wrists tied behind her back, preventing her from sitting down. Later in the evening, Quezada told police that when Leiliana had trouble swallowing, she began to slap her on the chest and hit her on the head while telling her to swallow her food.

At one point, police say Phifer shoved the little girl against a piece of drywall in the closet. Her body left an indentation in the wall.

The girl’s grandparents, Craig and Alisa Clakley, tells KTVT that they took photos a year ago when they saw bruises on Leiliana. They reported it to Child Protective Services, but say the agency determined that Leiliana was safe.

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