By Cathy Locke
A Roseville mother accused of child abuse in connection with the death of her 2-year-old daughter entered a plea of not guilty at her brief arraignment in Placer County Superior Court this afternoon.
Denise Marie McGrath Wilder, 37, was formally charged with cruelty to a child by abuse, neglect or endangering health, under circumstances likely to produce great bodily harm or death in connection with the death of her daughter McKinley Wilder.
Wilder, first arrested April 4 after her daughter's body was discovered, was charged by the Placer County District Attorney's office after the county coroner reported the child died of acute alcohol poisoning and malnutrion. The DA announced the charges Monday.
Denise Wilder was arrested after Roseville Police and Fire Department personnel responded to Wilder's parents' home on Diamond Oaks Road. Denise Wilder and her ex-husband, Mark Wilder, had been through a bitter divorce and were involved in a child-custody fight. Family members said they had not been able to reach Denise Wilder for several days and had reported her missing.
According to police, a family member found her April 4 at the home of her parents, who were out of town, and found the 2-year-child was not breathing.
At her arraignment Tuesday, her attorney denied the allegations against his client.
He asked that Wilder's bond be reduced to $150,000, but prosecutors pointed out that in a previous ruling a judge decided she should be held without bail.
The issue will be revisited at a bail hearing at 8:30 a.m. July 5.