By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
Prosecutors sent a case regarding possible neglect by the mother of a 5-year-old boy who drowned in the Beardsley Canal back to Kern County sheriff's investigators for further investigation.
Kern County Chief Deputy District Attorney Mark Pafford said he couldn't comment further on what specifically was being asked for, just that the case was returned for further general investigation -- which is not terribly uncommon.
Sheriff's investigators have recommended felony child endangerment charges be filed against the mother, Yvette Valencia.
Valencia and her son, Dominick, were walking in the area of the canal June 21 when he slipped and fell in, Valencia has said. His body was recovered four hours later about a quarter of a mile west of where he fell.
An autopsy confirmed the cause of death was accidental asphyxiation due to drowning.
Valencia has said she can't understand why detectives would want to charge her with a crime. She has said investigators told her that, based on her description of what happened, she was about eight feet from Dominick when he fell in.