Mother charged in daughter’s freezing death, faces life in prison, possibly lethal injection

Channel 2′s Tom Jones has learned the mother accused of killing her 3-year-old daughter by leaving her and her brother in the freezing rain for hours is also accused of abusing her children two years ago.

35-year-old Uriha Ridge went before Douglas County Superior Court Chief Judge William Beau McClain for a first appearance hearing after she was charged with felony murder and first-degree child cruelty.

“Ms. Ridge. You have a right to remain silent,” Judge McClain told Ridge.

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Ridge didn’t say much during the hearing as she heard the charges she faces in the death of her daughter, Alina.

Pictures Ridge posted on her Facebook page show Alina during happier times.

Prosecutor Lauren Wallace said Ridge was high on cocaine and marijuana when she placed Alina in dangerous conditions on Jan. 16.

“By taking the aforementioned child into the woods in the rain and freezing temperatures with minimal clothing for a period of over 11 hours, causing the child to become hypothermic and to die from exposure,” she told the court.

Deputies say Ridge also had her 7-year-old son Elijah in the woods near the Fox Hall Resort.

Ridge also posted pictures of him on her Facebook page.

He was taken to the hospital.

Warrants show Ridge had a working cell phone but didn’t call for help for her kids.

Warrants also show in 2022, Ridge was arrested for punching Elijah and maliciously dropping Alina at a bowling alley. Witnesses said she was intoxicated and used vulgar language.

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In this latest case, the judge told Ridge she could get life with or without parole. “And death by lethal injection if the state chooses to seek the death penalty,” Judge McClain said.

The judge asked Ridge if she understood what was at stake.

“Yes,” Ridge responded.

Ridge showed no emotion and stared straight ahead.

“I’m not going to grant you bail at this time. I’m going to order that you be detained in jail,” the judge told her.

In that 2022 case, Ridge was given a $5,000 bond and ordered to take parenting classes, enter an alcohol therapy program, and stay with her mother.

Warrants show she never reported any progress on those programs and even got a DUI charge in Cobb County last year, which leaves people wondering how she managed to keep her kids.

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