5-year-old girl witnesses drunken brawl

A 21-year-old woman was turned over to Carson City authorities for a probation violation after deputies found her intoxicated early Dec. 2 and fighting with her boyfriend in the presence of her 5-year-old daughter.

Deputies were contacted by the little girl's father in Carson City who shares custody of his daughter with Tessla Higuera of Gardnerville.

He said the woman's boyfriend called him to say Higuera was drunk and he needed to pick up his daughter.

The man said he was worried about his daughter's safety because he could hear screaming in the background and believed Higuera and Daniel Verduzco, 26, were intoxicated.

When deputies arrived at the Mission Street apartment, they knocked and looked in the front window. A sergeant observed Verduzco allegedly push Higuera. They could see the residence was in disarray.

The deputies called out to the inhabitants for 50 minutes and tried to reach the couple by phone, but their cell phones had been turned off.

Due to concerns for the child's safely, deputies kicked in the front door and entered the residence.

The kitchen floor was covered with a broken artificial Christmas tree and decorations. The living room was covered with broken glass from picture frames and ornaments. Other debris was strewn throughout the apartment, deputies said.

Higuera, Verduzco, the little girl and another man were found in a bedroom with a single mattress on the floor.

Deputies said the little girl was "visibly terrified" and standing in a corner screaming. Deputies determined Higuera had a warrant from Carson Township Justice Court and Verduzco was on Carson alternative sentencing.

Her preliminary blood-alcohol content was tested at .252, more than three times the legal limit of .08 for driving. She is not allowed to drink on probation. Verduzco's alcohol level tested at .012. Higuera was jailed on charges of obstructing an officer and child endangerment.

Verduzco was jailed on charges of domestic battery and probation violation. The little girl's father took custody of the child. The pair appeared Wednesday in East Fork Justice Court.

Higuera was sent to Carson City where she was arrested in July after police found a 6-year-old boy at home alone about 10 p.m. Higuera reportedly showed up two hours later with her 3-year-old niece. Her blood-alcohol content was .292.

When she returns to Douglas County, she faces a misdemeanor charge of contributory neglect of a child. Verduzco is set for trial Dec. 30 on a second charge of domestic battery. He also has a hold from Carson City.


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