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Man Pleads Guilty In Scalding Death Of Toddler

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John Vigil (credit: Denver Police Department)

John Vigil (credit: Denver Police Department)

DENVER (CBS4) – A man faces up to 36 years in prison after pleading guilty in a 2008 scalding death of a 2-year-old boy.

Lynn Kimbrough with the district attorney’s office said John Vigil, 28, pleaded guilty on Friday to child abuse resulting in death.

“Vigil and the mother of 2-year-old Elijah Archuleta brought him to St. Anthony Hospital with severe burns; he died shortly after arrival,” Kimbrough said in a statement. “The investigation determined that Vigil had caused severe burns over 75 percent of the child’s body by scalding him in the bathtub and then he failed to seek medical care for the child.”

Vigil and the child’s mother, Isela Reyes-Talamantes, 28, then ran errands while the child was dying a slow, painful death from the burns.

Isela Reyes-Talamantes and her boyfriend face charges in a November 2008 case of fatal child abuse. According to court documents Reyes-Talamantes waited about 10 hours before taking her child Elijah Archuleta, 2, to St. Anthony's Hospital. Doctors said the boy was not breathing, had no pulse and that he had a black eye. He had burns over 75 percent of his body.

Isela Reyes-Talamantes and her boyfriend face charges in a November 2008 case of fatal child abuse. According to court documents Reyes-Talamantes waited about 10 hours before taking her child Elijah Archuleta, 2, to St. Anthony’s Hospital. Doctors said the boy was not breathing, had no pulse and that he had a black eye. He had burns over 75 percent of his body.

Reyes-Talamantes is serving a 20-year prison term in connection with the death.

“She also failed to make any effort to seek medical care that could have saved his life and she later lied to police in an effort to protect both herself and her boyfriend from prosecution,” Kimbrough said.

Vigil will be sentenced May 9.

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