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Florida Mom Charged After Infant Son Drowns in Bathtub While She Did Her Nails at ‘At-Home Manicure Station’ in Garage

Alyssa Carolyn Jimmie via Miami-Dade Corrections

Alyssa Carolyn Jimmie via Miami-Dade Corrections

A 22-year-old Florida woman was arrested last week after she left her infant son to drown in a bathtub in their home while she was in the garage doing her nails, authorities say.

Alyssa Carolyn Jimmie was taken into custody and charged with one count of felony aggravated manslaughter of a child under the age of 18 in the death of 7-month-old Prince Mejia, court records reviewed by Law&Crime show.

According to an arrest affidavit obtained by Miami NBC affiliate WTVJ, Jimmie on May 20 placed her son Prince and his 3-year-old brother in the primary bathtub with the water running in their home located on Southwest 154th Avenue. She then left the two children unattended and went to the garage, located approximately 65 feet away from the bathroom, where she worked on her nails at an “at-home manicure station.” Per the affidavit, Jimmie told investigators that she thought her children would be fine because the plug for the bathtub’s drain was missing, which she believed would prevent the tub from filling with water.

After doing her nails for approximately five to 10 minutes, Jimmie returned to the bathroom to check on her children and reportedly found her infant son facedown and unconscious in the bathtub, which was nearly filled with water. Prince’s older brother was reportedly playing in the water next to him.

Per the affidavit, a small washcloth had become lodged in the tub’s drain, allowing it to fill with water despite the missing plug. Jimmie reportedly told investigators she was aware that her 3-year-old son knew how to intentionally clog the bathtub drain using a washcloth.

Jimmie reportedly pulled the infant from the tub and attempted to revive the child using CPR, the report states. She then brought the child to the home of a neighbor who called 911 because Jimmie’s phone was not in service.

Emergency Medical Services responded to the 911 call and brought the child to a HCA Florida Kendall Hospital for medical attention. Doctors were reportedly able to get the infant’s heart beating, but he was presumed to be brain dead after going without a heartbeat for approximately 45 to 60 minutes.

After three days in the hospital, the infant succumbed to his injuries on May 23 and was pronounced dead.

Associate Miami-Dade Medical Examiner Mark Shuman performed an autopsy on the infant and reportedly determined that the child’s manner and cause of death was accidental drowning.

Investigators on the case reportedly performed a series of tests on the bathtub. They determined that when the water was running and the drain was not blocked, the tub never filled with more than two inches of water. However, when the drain was blocked with a towel, investigators reportedly found that the tub was half-full within five minutes and completely full within ten minutes.

Based on those findings—and Jimmie reportedly admitting she was aware that her older son knew how to block the drain—authorities said that Jimmie was negligent in failing to provide her infant son with “the proper care that a prudent person would consider essential to the well-being of a seven-month-old child,” according to WTVJ.

Jimmie, a member of Florida’s Miccosukee Tribe, appeared before Judge Mindy Glazer on Thursday where her attorney, Simon Dray, reportedly argued that the child’s death was a tragic and unintentional accident.

“This is just a horrible accident and the family and Alyssa haven’t had a chance to grieve at all,” Dray argued, according to the Miami Herald. “She is devastated about the loss of her child.”

Jimmie was later released after posting $10,000 bond, per records reviewed by Law&Crime.

She is scheduled to appear in court again at 9:00 a.m. on June 24.

[image via Miami-Dade Corrections]

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Jerry Lambe is a journalist at Law&Crime. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York Law School and previously worked in financial securities compliance and Civil Rights employment law.