Dwight Hill

Dwight was born two months premature. He was also addicted to cocaine, and taken into state custody shortly after his birth.  He would be placed with a foster parent. When he was four months old Dwight would be placed in the care of a foster parent that had been caring for two 2 year olds and her own son that was suffered from cerebral palsy.  11 days later Dwight would die from bleeding in the brain from blunt force trauma, and a fractured skull.  The foster parent noticed clear signs but chose not to bring him in until it was to late. She would place the baby in his carrier and bring him to a doctors appointment. She said she thought Dwight was sleeping. When the doctor saw Dwight was clearly not breathing.

No picture of Dwight Hill could be found.

Tucson woman on trial in death of 4-month-old foster child
by Sheryl Kornman on May. 03, 2007, under Local, Special

Four-month-old Dwight Hill died 11 days after he was placed in the care of Guadalupe Y. Gomez, a state-licensed foster parent.

During opening arguments today in Gomez’s trial on a charge of felony child abuse, her attorney said she had done nothing to contribute to Dwight’s death in November 2005.

But prosecutor Nicol Green told the jury the baby died “in a way no person should have to endure.”

A Pima County coroner’s autopsy report indicated the baby died of blunt-force trauma, bleeding in the brain and a fractured skull.

Gomez’s trial comes less than three weeks after a preliminary hearing to determine whether a foster parent couple should be tried on charges of felony child abuse in the death of a 16-month-old girl in their care for less than a month in 2005.

The judge has yet to rule in that case.

In Dwight Hill’s case, West said Gomez thought the boy was asleep in his baby carrier when she took him to a doctor appointment three days after she noticed he appeared ill.

Green said that on Nov. 16, 2005, Gomez did not indicate to anyone that the baby needed immediate medical care.

At the time, his fatal injury had already taken place, Green said.

She said Gomez covered the baby with a blanket as she read a magazine for 45 minutes in the doctor’s office until the doctor was ready to examine the baby.

When the blanket was removed, the doctor saw immediately that the baby was not breathing and was dead, Green said.

Dwight was born two months premature, addicted to cocaine, and was taken into state custody shortly after birth.

Child Protective Services placed the baby with Casa de Los Niños.

After several months, the infant was placed in Gomez’s care by La Paloma Family Services, a state contractor that screens and licenses foster parents.

Gomez was already caring for three other foster children, two of them 2-years-old, and her own son, who is disabled by cerebral palsy.

In court documents, she listed her occupation as “foster parent.”

Foster parents receive a state subsidy of about $30 a day for each foster child living in their home.

All the foster children were removed from her custody after her arrest in November 2005.

Her state license was revoked by CPS, and she said in court documents that she has been unable to get a job since she was charged with felony child abuse in the boy’s death.

Her husband Robert Gomez listed his occupation as “unemployed” in court documents.

He filed divorce papers against his wife last year, but the divorce action was dismissed recently because there had been no activity in the case for at least two months.

Before the start of the trial, Gomez’s attorney, Steven West, asked the court not to allow her criminal history to be introduced in this case and the court agreed.

The criminal history has been sealed by court order.

A charge of murder against Gomez in the baby’s death was dismissed without prejudice, meaning the charge could be refiled. And two counts of felony child abuse in Dwight Hill’s death were combined so that she now faces one felony count in this trial



Foster Mom Guadalupe Yolanda Gomez Convicted in Death of Four-Month-Old Dwight Hill



In Tucson, Arizon foster mother Guadalupe Yolanda Gomez will get 2 1/2 years in prison for the death of four-month-old Dwight Hill. The baby died of a skull fracture that caused bleeding in his brain and retinal hemorrhages.

ONLY 2 1/2 YEARS?!?

The jury decided Gomez didn’t knowingly or intentionally place the baby in a situation in which his life was in danger. However, they thought she behaved recklessly by not immediately seeking help for him when there were signs something was wrong with him.

Doctors believe the child suffered blunt force trauma to his head within three or four days of his death. Witnesses and Gomez said they began seeing changes in the baby’s behavior around that time – Dwight projectile-vomited and had loose stools. The next morning, Dwight’s eyes were rolling back in his head and he was hard to wake up. During a supervised visit with his biological parents, and they noticed the boy was lethargic and not eating well.

The baby was no better the next day. Case workers told Gomez that she should bring him into their clinic when she called with her concerns. For some reason, Gomez didn’t and set up a doctor’s appointment for two days later.

When the doctor examined the infant, he was dead.

Is this a case where there was true abuse or just a major fuck up? Gomez was and experienced and trusted foster mother. At the time she had Dwight in her care, Gomez was also a foster mother to his older sister and two other toddlers. She and her husband were also raising a 10-year-old biological child with cerebral palsy.

That’s five kids total. Could she had been too busy to notice how badly he was doing? That and the fact that Dwight was a premature baby born with cocaine in his system, and others had access to him during time of his injuries is probably why she’s getting off lightly. Sounds like poor Dwight never had a chance.

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