The man accused of giving a 13-year-old girl cocaine and dropping her off at a Massachusetts hospital last week shortly before she died was ordered held without bail at his arraignment Tuesday morning.
Carlos Rivera, 47, of Lawrence, was arrested on Saturday after officials reviewed surveillance footage and spent days investigating the mystery of Chloe Ricard's death.
The Amesbury girl was left at Lawrence General Hospital at 4:47 p.m. on Monday and died shortly after her arrival, according to the district attorney's office.
Rivera sexually assaulted and gave cocaine to teenage girls, the Essex County District Attorney's Office said Tuesday. The prosecutors said he also indecently assaulted a 16-year-old girl at an earlier date.
"This is an ongoing investigation, there's numerous additional people that need to be spoken to," said Assistant District Attorney Jessica Strasnick.
Rivera is charged with two counts of distribution of cocaine to a minor, two counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 and one count of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14. He did not speak during his court appearance and is expected back in court for a dangerousness hearing on June 4.
Prosecutors have released few details about the girl's mysterious death, even filing a motion Tuesday to have documents in the case kept private until July 1 because they still need to interview people in connection with the case.
Authorities said Chloe and another girl under the age of 16 were at Rivera's Lawrence apartment at 59 Bellevue St. on the evening of May 19 and throughout most of the next day. Investigators believe Rivera was accompanied by a third teenage girl when he took Chloe to the hospital.
One of Rivera's neighbors, Carlos Ospina, said he would often see the suspect spending time with girls and younger women.
The teenager's family said they are heartbroken over her death and attended Rivera's arraignment.
"I'm going to say something. I am going to say something because I hope he gets his," said Ricard's stepfather, Brian Dolan.
The family had no comment as they left court Tuesday.
An autopsy was performed last week, but officials said it could be some time before there is a ruling on the cause and manner of Chloe's death.
Rivera is being represented by attorney Jeanne Earley.
A neighbor, who did not want her identity revealed, said she only interacted with Rivera when he hit her 9-year-old son with his car last year while he was riding on his bicycle.
"That’s just scary. It makes anyone uncomfortable to find out that you're living right next to somebody that's practically a pedophile," said Rivera's neighbor. "He did mention when he crashed into my son that he has a son himself, same age as my son."
The neighbor added that she never saw his son, only teenagers partying at Rivera's apartment.
"Even weekdays I think I had seen teens coming out of there," said the neighbor.
Those who know Rivera from his work as a car inspector at Universal Auto Repair in Lawrence said the charges are shocking.
"That's not good, if he had done it, that's not good, as personally speaking anything like that doing to a teenager, it's not good, that's what I would say," said Rick Mishra, a worker at the Lawrence City Mart who knows Rivera.
The incident remains under investigation. The suspect could still face additional charges.
Chloe Ricard was born in Vermont but spent most of her life in Northborough, Massachusetts, before moving to Amesbury two years ago. She attended Amesbury Middle School and more recently the Solstice Day School in Rowley.
"Chloe loved drawing, dancing, acro, yoga and music," her obituary said. "She was extremely creative and was an avid dancer. Among her favorite beaches was Old Orchard Beach in Maine. Chloe was especially fond of her cat Moo."
Visiting hours for Chloe are scheduled to be held Tuesday at a funeral home in Shrewsbury. The funeral and burial are private.