Mother Charged With Child Abuse After Allegedly Locking Daughter In Fridge

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A mother is being charged with aggravated child abuse for allegedly locking her 8-year-old daughter in a refrigerator.

During her first court appearance Friday, Carolina Alvarez tried to argue with the judge, but was promptly shut down.

"Number one, the door was wide open. Number two, the only reason -- " Alvarez began.

"Ma'am, please don't talk about the charges. You're presumed not guilty, anything you say can be used against you," the judge responded.

The child's uncle alerted police to the incident on Thursday, according to an arrest report. Officers say they found the 8-year-old sitting inside the refrigerator with a scared look on her face while her mother was laying on the couch.

When NBC 6 stopped by Alvarez's Hialeah apartment Friday, several officers could be seen outside her unit.

Neighbors say the charges are hard to believe.

"I don't see any abuse toward the child, I don't see any markings on the child," one neighbor said. "When she's outside, she's happy. She's not depressed, not looking down."

The arrest report also states there are pictures of old incidents where Alvarez placed her daughter under concrete tiles on top of the bed.

Alvarez claims she was trying to protect the girl from radiation in the apartment.

The judge ordered Alvarez to stay away from her daughter.

"No contact with the child directly, indirectly, in person or in writing, in person or through telephone."

Alvarez is being held under a $7,500 bond. The judge says her child is in state custody.

NBC 6 reached out to the Department for Children and Families for a statement and have not yet heard back.

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