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Aquelin Talamantes Pleads Not Guilty At Arraignment in Yolo County

Photo: Sacramento Bee
29 year old Aquelin Talamantes was arraigned in Yolo County Superior Court on Monday, where she plead not guilty to charges of murdering her 5 year old daughter Tatianna Garcia.  Talamantes reportedly showed little emotion during the brief hearing, resting her head in her hands several times during the proceedings.

The hearing shed little new information on exactly what happened to her 5 year old daughter Tatianna, who was pronounced dead at an area hospital after being discovered unresponsive in trunk of Talamantes Honda Accord last Thursday afternoon at the apartment of a relatives in Sacramento. Although the coroner has yet to release a cause of death and authorities have remained tight lipped about the condition of Tatianna's body, prosecutors allege Talamantes beat her daughter and filed a second charge of "assault on a young child with force likely to result in death." It's not difficult to read between the lines here - there had to be a reason that the child's mother was initially arrested and charged with murder. This leads me to believe there may have been visible marks, bruises or trauma to Tatianna's body when she was found in the car's trunk.

Several family members were present at the arraignment and could be heard sobbing openly as she was led in, chained to other inmates who were being arraigned on Monday. Talamantes reportedly glanced back into the gallery at her family. As she was being led back to jail after the brief court appearance, a supporter shouted "we still love you Aquelin". She is due back in court on October 15, 2013 where she will appear with her court appointed attorney. She is being held without bail.  None of her family or friends who came to support her in court spoke with reporters.

New details on the troubled life of Aquelin Talamantes are emerging. A friend of hers spoke with Sacramento CBS13 and reported that Talamantes' own mother was murdered in 1995, when she was just 11 years old. The friend, who wished to remain anonymous also reported that Aquelin had recently been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic, but had not been taking medication for the illness. She visited Talamantes in jail, where Talamantes told her "she loved her daughter very much.  She won't talk about what happened. She said that she loves her son. She wants her son to be contacted to let him know she loved him", the friend said.  I'm wondering why she is saying she loved her son, and not that she loves him. 

It sounds like this is another tragedy in a difficult and dark life. Rosa Talamantes, Aquelin's mother, went missing back in 1995 and her body was discovered in a field a month later. Rosa's boyfriend was eventually charged with murdering her. Rosa Talamantes left behind seven children, one of which was Aquelin - the very mother who is charged with killing her own 5 year old daughter.  Additional reports reveal that Aquelin Talamantes was in the middle of a custody battle at the time of Tatianna's murder.  Tatianna's grandmother, Martha Garcia told CBS13 in Sacramento that Tatianna should have been with her and not with her mother.  Garcia's son is Tatianna's father, and they lived with her in their Suisun City home for nearly 3 years before the couple broke up and Aquelin and her children moved out.

Tatianna's aunt Claudia Garcia said she saw some signs of depression in Aquelin, but never felt the children were in danger. Martha Garcia expressed her frustration that the police who encountered Aquelin acting strangely on Thursday morning didn't intervene.  "The police should have taken the kids",   but they left them," she said.  

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