A 24-year-old Richland woman is accused of passing out while using meth, leaving her 3-year-old daughter to wander alone outside their home.
Rebecca Valera Verduzco pleaded innocent to unlawful possession of methamphetamine and reckless endangerment. She faces a Nov. 5 trial date in Benton County Superior Court.
Deputy Prosecutor Megan Killgore asked for $1,000 bail. She said Verduzco doesn't have a criminal history, but the nature of the charge warranted some bail.
"This was a very serious incident," she said. "She's lucky that it didn't end up much more serious."
Never miss a local story.
Defense attorney Kevin Holt was appointed to represent Verduzco, but defense attorney Sal Mendoza Jr. stood in for Holt during the arraignment.
Mendoza said Verduzco has lived in the Tri-Cities all her life and has extended family in the area. He also said she has a significant medical history, and asked that she be released from custody.
"She just found out she has a brain tumor. They're trying to figure out how fast it's growing," he said. "It's causing a great deal of stress."
Verduzco told Judge Robert Swisher that she was supposed to see a specialist earlier in the week, but she wasn't able to go because she was in jail.
Swisher agreed to release her on her own recognizance, but said her daughter could not be left alone with her. Mendoza said the girl is with other family members and any visits would be supervised.
Verduzco was arrested by Richland police Sept. 8 after they received a call at 6:45 p.m. about a young girl walking up and down alone in front of her house, court documents said.
The girl also apparently was seen going in and out of the house at 1304 Sanford Ave.
When officers arrived they knocked on the door and the 3-year-old answered. She said her mom, "Becky," was sleeping, documents said.
Officers yelled into the home several times trying to contact the adult, then told the girl to go wake up her mother. The girl ran into the room, then returned and said she was sleeping, documents said.
Another officer went around to the back of the house and knocked on the bedroom window, but got no response.
After about 20 minutes, officers went inside to check the woman's welfare and found Verduzco on her back on the mattress with a glass smoking pipe in her hand, documents said.
Verduzco eventually woke up and reportedly told officers she had smoked meth from the pipe but expected it would keep her awake, not put her to sleep, documents said.
Man arrested after being found in Kennewick car
A 21-year-old found in a car outside a Kennewick home early in the morning was arrested after the residents said they didn't know him.
Tanner Dallas Pentecost pleaded innocent in Benton County Superior Court to second-degree possession of stolen property and three counts of second-degree vehicle prowling.
Pentecost, who had identification listing an Idaho address but told a judge that he's lived in Washington since he was 18, faces a Nov. 5 trial.
He was contacted around 2 a.m. Sept. 8 after Kennewick police were called to the area of West Hood and Deschutes avenues and spotted him in a 1992 Oldsmobile, court documents said.
Pentecost reportedly said he had permission to be in the car, but when officers checked with the owners they said they did not know him.
The owners also said cigarette rollers were missing from the vehicle, documents said.
The cigarette rollers, along with a laptop, hard drive, computer bag and GPS unit, were found when officers searched Pentecost, documents said.
The other items were reportedly stolen from a 2012 Ford Escort in the 900 block of Pittsburgh Street.
Officers also recovered a set of keys and a lanyard that were taken from a Ford LaSabre in the 700 block of Pittsburgh Street, documents said.