Couple Charged with Beating 20-Month-Old to Death to Plead Not Guilty

Posted in: Iowa City Owl
The Iowa City couple that has been charged with beating a 20-month-old child to death has elected to plead not guilty in their upcoming trial. 

18-year-old Mireya Balderas and 20-year-old Jorge Perez have both been accused of child endangerment resulting in death after an investigation was launched to establish the cause of death of Balderas's 20-month old baby, Marcus. 

Charges were filed after the completion of an investigation into the death of Marcus Balderas. The child was taken to the University of Iowa Hospitals on April 30, where he died. 

It was later discovered that he died from blunt force trauma to the head. He also had multiple other injuries that hinted at very severe abuse. An autopsy revealed all of this and the police ruled the death a homicide, believing Perez to be responsible for the actual death. 

Both of the two charged admitted to abuse and neglect of the child, Perez admitting to much more extensive and severe abuse but claiming that he did not mean to kill the child, saying it was an accident. Balderas admitted to witnessing the abuse from Perez and doing nothing to stop it. 

Three other children were removed from the same home after the investigation was launched. They were placed in foster care immediately. 

The charges that the couple faces can result in sentences of up to 50 years in jail if the couple is found guilty. The pre-trail conference, according to, is set for August 24, and the trial for the couple is set for September 4. 
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