Apr 25, 2012 1:40 AM

Foster parents of dead baby speak out

Tucson - The 3-month old baby, buried in a shallow grave outside Eloy, was once in Child Protective custody.

Removed from her parents' care when she was born, Vanessa Martinez and her 2-year-old sister, Dominique, were placed with foster parents, Kristy and Joey Martin. For about two-and-a-half months the Martins cared for both girls, while their mother dealt with her drug problem. Then, about two-and-a-half weeks after they left the Martin's care, Pima County detectives believe Vanessa was dead.

Joey Martin says, the family was reunited too quickly. He tells News4 Tucson, in an exclusive interview, "They (CPS) just tried to get their parents back with their kids and move on to the next kids, and hope it works out."

Instead, Pima County detectives would comb the desert, for Vanessa's body. Investigators say, both parents confessed to burying Vanessa, but Olivia Martinez says Vanessa died in Jonathan Kesterson's care. Jonathan says, Vanessa died with Olivia. Either way, detectives think she was removed from her parents, reunited with Mom and Dad and murdered... all by the age of 3-months.

According to Pima County's search warrant affidavit, there was never a missing person's report made. That means, either the case was closed very fast, the CPS worker never followed-up, or CPS failed to notify authorities that they couldn't find the kids. News 4 asked CPS for comment.

They denied our request.


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