Roberto Antonio Alvarez, 39, testified that he didn’t see the bruises on 2 ½-year-old Mariah Alvarez’s body, until he tried to perform cardio pulmonary resuscitation or CPR on her the night that she died
"I tried to do CPR on her. I don’t know if I was doing it right. I figured I had to do something," Alvarez testified.
"When I picked up her shirt I saw bruises on Mariah’s chest," Alvarez testified. "I told Melissa (Lucio, the child’s mother) what did you do. She didn’t say anything."
Alvarez testified that he repeatedly asked Lucio if his daughter was okay and that she replied yes. Because he believed what Lucio said, he never thought to question her.
"You think that when you are with somebody for so long, you believe them," Alvarez testified.
Hours before Mariah died, Alvarez testified that he sensed something was not right with his daughter
. He had been out running errands and when he returned home, he said, "It hit me. I felt like something was wrong."
"Something told me to go and check on her," Alvarez testified.
When he went to check on Mariah he noticed she was not breathing, he further testified. He picked her up from the bed, placed her on the ground and started performing CPR.
"Everything happened so fast. I was all freaked out. Nothing happened (when I started CPR.) She was just there," Alvarez testified.
Harlingen EMS and police, after receiving an emergency call of a child in cardiac arrest, responded to an apartment on Lee Street in Harlingen, where the child lived when she died. Upon arrival emergency personnel found the child on the floor. She was not breathing.
According to Alvarez’s statement to police, which was previously read in court, he went to check on his daughter as she slept. He noticed she was pale and not breathing, the statement reads. He grabbed the child in his arms, put her down and started to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the child, until EMS paramedics arrived.
Also in his statement, Alvarez stated: "I felt if I had taken her to the doctor she would be alive today."
Alvarez testified that he made that statement the morning after his daughter died while being questioned by police.
"I’m still trying to figure out what happened," he testified.