Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Critically Ill Arizona Girl Missing From Hospital

Surveillance footage taken at Phoenix Children's Hospital showing Norma Bracamontes with Emily.

An 11-year-old girl is in danger of dying from an infection after her mother took her out of a Phoenix hospital prematurely. Emily Bracamontes has leukemia and has undergone a month of chemotherapy. Her mother, Norma Bracamontes, 35, was caught on security cameras on November 28 leading Emily, whose right arm has been amputated, out of Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Authorities say Bracamontes changed her daughter’s clothes, put a wig on her head and removed a catheter that lead to Emily’s heart. The removal of the catheter leaves Emily’s chest unsealed and vulnerable to infection that could kill her in a matter of days, doctors say.

Authorities are baffled as to why the child’s mother would remove her ailing daughter from the hospital, however Phoenix Police Sgt. Steve Martos said that Emily’s mother and father, Luis Bracamontes, had done this before in California. Police are considering criminal charges. “If the mom is aware of the dangers, and I would suspect that she’s aware of it, especially by now, and she’s failing to provide proper care for her child? There is an element of child neglect or child abuse. It’s difficult to say if there’s a crime without speaking with her,” said Martos.

Police Saturday stopped Luis Bracamontes at the U.S./Mexico border but claimed not to know his daughter’s whereabouts.

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