BROWNSVILLE – An Edmonson County woman charged in her toddler son’s death was arraigned Monday on an indictment accusing her of murder and 17 other criminal counts.

Alexandra Richardson, 28, appeared in Edmonson Circuit Court on charges of murder, first-degree assault, 12 counts of first-degree wanton endangerment, operating a motor vehicle while under the influence, first-degree possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

She is accused of wantonly causing the death of 20-month-old Carson McCullough after attempting to drive across a bridge that had closed because of flooding.

Edmonson Circuit Judge Tim Coleman appointed attorney Joe Howard of the state Department of Public Advocacy to represent Richardson, who pleaded not guilty to all counts.

Richardson, who is in Hart County Jail under a $250,000 cash bond, was directed to return to court Feb. 17 for a discovery conference.

Carson died Dec. 3, a day after police said Richardson attempted to cross a flooded bridge over Alexander Creek on Oak Hill Road.

In a recent preliminary hearing, Sgt. Wally Ritter of the Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office testified the road on either side of the bridge was marked with road closed signs and when Richardson approached the bridge, she backed up and attempted to accelerate across, only for her vehicle to stall in the water.

Richardson and her 7-year-old son, Isaiah, made it out of the car to safety, but Carson was lost.

“At some point, (Richardson) lost or let go of Carson while trying to swim to safety,” Ritter testified last month.

A neighbor who heard the commotion came to the area of the bridge and got Richardson and her older son to the bank of the creek.

A 911 call brought several first responders to the scene to attempt to locate Carson, who was found floating in the water near the car about an hour after it stalled, Ritter said.

A paramedic at the scene suspected Richardson of being intoxicated, and during an interview with deputies, Richardson acknowledged having recently used methamphetamine and marijuana, according to police.

The sheriff’s office obtained a search warrant for Richardson’s medical records, which showed the presence of those drugs in her system at the time she arrived at The Medical Center at Bowling Green.

Online records with the Kentucky Department of Corrections list Richardson as an inmate serving up to eight years on a case from 2015 in which she pleaded guilty to criminal facilitation to manufacturing methamphetamine and fourth-degree controlled substance endangerment to a child.

Richardson had been on probation, which was revoked soon after her arrest in relation to Carson’s death.

– Follow courts reporter Justin Story on Twitter @jstorydailynews or visit bgdailynews.com.

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