North Texas

Grandmother in Custody After Grandson Dies of Severe Burns: Police

Police said the woman waited six days before seeking medical treatment for the toddler

A North Texas grandmother has been booked into the Tarrant County Jail after her grandson died of severe burns from scalding bath water, police say.

Haltom City police officers responded to a medical call at a residence on Haltom Road just before midnight March 30. When they arrived, they found 2-year-old Lyfe "Gabe" Flores with significant burns to his body.

The toddler was in the care of his grandmother and legal guardian, 43-year-old Patricia Flores, when the injuries occurred, according to police.

Gov. Greg Abbott says Texas Child Protective Services needs to be overhaul. He made the comments while discussing his new book.

Flores allegedly told officers that her grandson was injured when he was left alone in the bathroom with water running in the bathtub. She waited six days before seeking medical treatment for the child until he became unresponsive, police said.

"That's probably what angers me and just breaks my heart the most," maternal grandfather Mike Hamilton said. "Bad enough it had to happen but to go through the pain for six days before you call medical treatment? There's no excuse for that."

The boy was transported to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth due to the severity of his burns. He was later taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas.

"He's swollen, he's scratched, he's bruised, he's burned, he's burned from his waist down, his hands were burnt," Hamilton said, recalling his visit to the hospital.

Gabe Flores died April 4. Police said the lack of medical treatment for the severe burns led to an infection, which may have contributed to his death. The medical examiner's office will determine the exact cause of death.

On April 7, Haltom police issued an arrest warrant for Patricia Flores for injury to a child, with a bond set at $75,000. They confirmed she was in custody a week later in Frio County in South Texas.

On Tuesday, Flores was extradited to North Texas and booked into the Tarrant County Jail.

It wasn't immediately clear if she had an attorney.

"I want her brought to justice and I want everything that she deserves for the law to give her," Hamilton said.

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