BANGOR, Maine — A former North Carolina woman pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court to neglecting her child while living at Fort Bragg and was sentenced to time served, or six days in jail.
Heather E. Salcido, 34, of Fairfield walked out of the courtroom wearing clothes from the Somerset County Jail in Madison, where she has been held since her arrest, and into the arms of her boyfriend. Salcido has been living with him recently, according to her attorney, Charles Hodsdon II of Bangor.
Salcido was arrested Wednesday in Maine on a warrant out of U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina in Fayetteville. She was free on bail at the time of her arrest, according to court documents.
The circumstances surrounding her arrest in Maine were not outlined in court documents. Salcido appears to have been living in Maine since mid-May, when she left North Carolina with her boyfriend, who was not identified in court, after he got out of the U.S. Army.
Salcido was charged in federal court because the crime took place on a military base. Under federal law, child neglect is a petty offense and comparable to a misdemeanor in state court in Maine.
Her case was handled in Maine after U.S. Magistrate Judge Margaret Kravchuk on Wednesday granted a change of venue motion filed by Hodsdon.
Salcido was charged in September 2011 after military police were called to her home in base housing at Fort Bragg for a domestic dispute the previous May, Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd Lowell told Kravchuk.
Salcido’s husband was charged with assault and her then-22-month-old son was sent to live with her mother-in-law in Alabama, where he remains.
“The defendant admitted to police she was intoxicated,” the federal prosecutor told the judge. “Police found drug paraphernalia in plain sight, rotten food in the home, dirty laundry strewn around and cigarette butts within the child’s reach.”
Salcido made her first appearance in federal court in Fayetteville, N.C., on Oct. 18, according to court documents. She was released on bail with conditions that she receive substance abuse counseling, maintain contact with her probation officer and provide him and the court with any change of address.
Probation Officer Eddie J. Smith filed a motion in late June to revoke Salcido’s bail because she had failed to complete treatment for substance abuse and had failed to show up for drug tests, according to court documents. He also received a call from Salcido in mid-June. She told him she had moved to California but refused to provide the officer with her new address, court documents state.
Salcido’s federal case is considered closed but she still must interact with authorities in North Carolina if she wants to regain custody of her son, now 3, Kravchuk said.