Correctional officer arraigned in death of her infant son

Police say Erica Bautista's son was shot by his 3-year-old sister

We're learning more about what happened inside the home of a Chowchilla correctional officer  when her one year old son was shot and killed by his three year old sister.
 
The childrens' mother, Erica Bautista, was arraigned in court today on manslaughter and child abuse charges.
 
Supporters gathered around Erica Bautista outside the Madera County courthouse.
 
She's been charged in the death of her one-year-old son.
 
"This is a truly tragic case," said Madera County District Attorney David Linn.
 
Linn gave some insight into what happened back in January at Bautista's home in Chowchilla.
 
She is a correctional officer at Valley State Prison.
 
The DA says Bautista's loaded handgun was on a bed when her three year old daughter fired the gun, striking Bautista's one-year-old son.
 
"We do believe that the law has been broken in terms of the control custody and keeping of the firearm," Linn said.
 
Bautista is charged with child abuse for the death of her son and also for the impact on the surviving child.
 
Legal analyst Charles Magill says the defense will likely try to get the second child abuse charge dismissed.
 
"Clearly the greater charge of not maintaining a weapon safely is the most appropriate charge. To charge her with child abuse, based upon the fact that the child got to that weapon and used it on another, that's ridiculous," Magill said.
 
The district attorney says no plea deal has been offered, but he is hopeful the case will be settled before trial.
 
"I'm hopeful that it doesn't go to trial because it will only exacerbate the tragedy," Linn said.
 
If convicted, Bautista could face up to ten years in prison.
 
The district attorney said there are currently no children living in Bautista's home.
 
And she has no firearms in her possession or in her home.
 
Erica Bautista is due back in court on March 21st.

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