Published: 2:17 pm, Thu. Apr. 27th, 2017Updated: 2:16 pm
The father of a 3-year-old girl who suffered severe burns during a backyard bonfire at a home on East Castleberry Road has been acquitted of child abuse.
Jurors found 39-year-old Jimmy Olguin of Artesia not guilty Wednesday. Olguin’s daughter suffered second- and third-degree burns to approximately 17 percent of her body after her clothing caught fire in the March 2016 incident.
Olguin told investigators he had started a bonfire in the backyard of his parents’ home and poured gasoline on the flames to keep it going, causing an explosion effect. He said his daughter got caught in the fire, and he was eventually able to put out the flames.
Eddy County Sheriff’s Office representatives stated at the time that while no evidence suggested the act was intentional, the charges stemmed from the fact Olguin waited 12 hours to seek medical assistance for the child at Artesia General Hospital. Olguin told authorities he and other family members had first attempted to treat the child themselves.
Olguin’s attorney, Ken Wilson, argued his client wasn’t negligent in caring for the child.