6/12/2013 9:43:00 AM Paulden woman arrested on child abuse charges; suspect pleaded guilty to raffle scam less than 2 months ago
Yavapai County Sheriff's Office deputies arrested 30-year-old Sonia Rios of Paulden on June 5 for nine counts of child abuse and neglect involving four of her six children. Rios was booked into the Yavapai County Detention Center in Camp Verde and remains in custody on a $250,000 bond.
The arrest came following an extensive investigation by YCSO detectives and investigators with Child Protective Services. That investigation led authorities to believe Rios abused her children physically and neglected to feed them, sometimes intentionally, according to a June 7 YCSO press release. Two of her children reported "extensive and ongoing" abuse to investigators. Reported "beatings" included the use of metal spoons, a belt, and a piece of garden hose. Three of Rios' children, according to the press release, were born substance exposed due to illicit narcotics use during pregnancy. Her children range in age from an infant to a 9-year-old. All of her children are currently in CPS custody or been adopted, according to police.
The abuse reportedly occurred at a residence on Maple Lane in Paulden and at a residence in Ash Fork.
The charges follow Rios' guilty plea in April for possession of drug paraphernalia, criminal impersonation and attempted fraudulent schemes and artifices in connection with a scheme involving the sale of raffle tickets. Rios, who used the name Gabriela Millan at the time of the 2012 incident, said the tickets benefited a premature infant at a Phoenix hospital, but was unable to provide any evidence to back up her story. Investigators later learned her real name and found evidence of the scheme at her home. At that time, Rios was already in custody on unrelated prescription drug charges.
Superior Court Judge Celé Hancock allowed Rios to stabilize her housing situation before beginning a term of probation in April.
YCSO detectives are seeking help from the public for additional information on Rios' activities, particularly when it comes to incidents of abuse that may not have been reported. Those with any information are asked to call (928) 771-3260 or Yavapai Silent Witness at (800) 932-3232 to report anonymously.