Police identify two toddlers killed in separate drowning incidents in Phoenix


Phoenix police identified two toddlers who died in separate drowning incidents Saturday afternoon.

On Saturday around 1:15 p.m., police found 2-year-old Axiel Marquez receiving CPR from his family after falling into a hot tub. Police continued those efforts and took him to a local hospital, but he did not survive his injuries, officials said.

Around 4:30 p.m., patrol officers and firefighters responded to the 911 call saying a baby had fallen into the pool. When they arrived at a home near 21200 North 34th Drive, they found 2-year-old Celeste Molina receiving CPR from her family. She was transported to a nearby hospital, where she did not survive her injuries.

Both incidents were investigated. Preliminary information suggests both incidents were accidental drownings, and investigators have not found any evidence of foul play, according to officials.

How to stay safe around the pool

Phoenix officials offered some tips on how to keep children safe near the water:

  • Install an approved barrier to separate a swimming pool from the rest of the home.
  • Keep life-saving devices such as a hook, pole or flotation device nearby.
  • Never leave children unattended near water or a swimming pool.
  • Take measures to ensure that an enclosed swimming pool is not accessible with chairs, tables or ladders.
  • Do not let children play in the pool.
  • Store toys far away from water.

Reporter Rey Covarrubias Jr. contributed to this article.

Annie Goodykoontz is a reporter for The Arizona Republic. You can reach her at [email protected].