POST (AP) — Texas child welfare officials said Friday that the agency last year investigated the family of a 2-year-old girl who was found fatally shot in her West Texas home.
The toddler's mother has been arrested on a charge of capital murder in the child's death.
Garza County Sheriff Terry Morgan told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal (http://bit.ly/1dYSg9C ) that Alexandria Lee Courtney-Dean was found dead from an apparent gunshot wound to the head Thursday evening in Post.
The girl's mother, 34-year-old Ashlee Anne Dean, is being held at the Garza County jail in Post, about 40 miles southeast of Lubbock.
Child Protective Service spokesman Paul Zimmerman said in an email that the agency had a history with the family and it is investigating the death along with the Texas Rangers and the sheriff's department.
In February 2013, CPS workers found reason to believe allegations of neglect after opening an investigation. Caseworkers were concerned about substance abuse and poor living conditions in the home, he said.
The mother successfully completed services with the agency over a six-month period and closed the case in November, Zimmerman said.
Her stepmother, Bonita Dean of Lubbock, said her stepdaughter doesn't yet have an attorney.
"All we can do is speculate at this point until they finish the investigation," she said. "We don't know what frame of mind she was in when this happened."
Bonita Dean said Alexandria would have turned 3 in April.