Mother charged in scalding death of toddler

    Lisa Simmons (Milwaukee Co. Jail)

    MILWAUKEE (AP) -- A Milwaukee mother is charged in the scalding death of her 2-year-old daughter, who was recently returned to her by child protection services.

    A criminal complaint says 41-year-old Lisa Simmons dipped the toddler in hot bathtub water on Sept. 20 at which point, the child began kicking and screaming.

    She then held the child in the water for about a minute before realizing how hot the water was and removed the child from the water, the complaint says.

    Prosecutors say two-year-old Zayanna Simmons died after her mother placed in her a bathtub of scalding hot water. (WITI-TV)

    Simmons told investigators she noticed the child's skin was blistering and peeling and tried to treat the burns at home but it got worse over the next few days.

    Simmons said she was afraid to take her daughter to the hospital because she had an open case with the Division of Milwaukee Child Protective Services.

    On Sunday, the mother called 911 to report her daughter wasn't breathing.

    An autopsy found Zayanna Simmons died of thermal burn injuries.

    The girl had been returned to Simmons in May. She's charged with first-degree reckless homicide and child neglect resulting in death.

    It was not clear if Simmons has hired an attorney who could speak on her behalf.

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