Houston woman who suffered miscarriage convicted in friend's murder and kidnapping her baby, DA says

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Thursday, May 23, 2024
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HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Houston woman was convicted for plotting to kill her friend and kidnap her newborn baby back in 2017, according to the Harris County District Attorney's Office.

On Tuesday, 35-year-old Erika Miranda-Alvarez pleaded guilty to murder and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

On Dec. 19, 2017, family members found 33-year-old Carolina Flores-Miranda stabbed to death in her Aldine-area apartment, and her baby girl was missing.

Multiple law enforcement agencies searched for two days before finding 6-week-old Shamali Flores with Miranda-Alvarez at her apartment complex in the 9700 block of South Gessner, more than 30 miles from the murder scene.

The Houston Police Department reported that Miranda-Alvarez had a miscarriage recently before the murder and planned to raise Shamali as her own.

According to the DA's Office, Miranda-Alvarez was a friend of Flores-Miranda's family for several years.

When Houston Police Department detectives questioned her, Miranda-Alvarez initially admitted only to kidnapping.

She reportedly told police that she went to her friend's apartment and saw her body, so she took the baby.

Assistant District Attorney Casey Smith said Miranda-Alvarez planned out the crime, including telling a friend days before the murder that she had her baby.

"She knew what she was doing was wrong, and we know that from what she said to people and what she did, including dumping the victim's cellphone in the toilet tank," Smith said.

The DA's Office said Miranda-Alvarez must serve at least half of her prison sentence before she is eligible for parole and cannot appeal the conviction or the sentence.

Shamali Flores: A timeline in the baby's disappearance

Timeline of Shamali Flores' disappearance