ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) – The lawyer of a mother accused of suffocating her 3-year-old son says her client tried to surrender to police on an unrelated charge only hours before the boy was killed.

Public defender Lee Hood said Wednesday that 23-year-old Tiffany Toribio went to police on May 12 but officers declined to arrest her on a warrant for driving without insurance.

Toribio was fined $159 in July 2008 but failed to pay when she lost her job.

According to Hood, she went to police to resolve that issue.

Toribio faces first-degree murder and other charges in the death of her son, Ty.

She told police she suffocated Ty before dawn on May 13; his body was found May 15 buried in sand at a public playground.

Prosecutors have until June 8 to take the case to a grand jury.


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