PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — Two of three people charged in connection with the death of a Pawtucket toddler late last year, including his mother, faced a judge on Wednesday.
Jessaline Andrade, 27, and Stephano Castro, 31, were arraigned on a charge of second-degree murder. Andrade also faces two counts of cruelty to or neglect of a child.
Andrade and Castro pleaded not guilty to all charges. Andrade was released on $50,000 bail with surety and Castro is being held without bail.
Yara Chum, 34, was also charged with second-degree murder but his arraignment has been postponed to Oct. 5.
The 2-year-old boy was rushed to the hospital last December after he was found unresponsive inside a Sayles Avenue apartment, where he was later pronounced dead.
The apartment was in deplorable condition and lacked basic furniture, investigators said, adding that they also discovered equipment for manufacturing and distributing drugs.
Investigators said the toddler died from acute fentanyl intoxication. His 8-year-old brother also tested positive for fentanyl exposure but survived, according to police.
12 News confirmed the Department of Children, Youth and Families was previously involved with the family, but not at the time of the boy’s death.