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West Allis mom pleads not guilty to charges from deadly fire

Jodi Becker and the Associated Press with Jay Sorgi

Photo: Video by tmj4.com

West Allis mom pleads not guilty to charges from deadly fire

CREATED Apr. 25, 2013 - UPDATED: Apr. 25, 2013

MILWAUKEE - A mom from West Allis who lost three children to a house fire has pleaded not guilty to felony charges of child neglect. 

Angelica Belen waived her preliminary hearing.

Belen is accused of leaving the four and five-year-old children locked in a bedroom while she went to work.

The children died when a fire started at their home last month.

Defense attorney Reyna Morales says a not-guilty plea is standard at this stage in a felony case because it allows the legal process to move forward.

Belen also faces six misdemeanor counts of child neglect. Those charges stem from allegations that she left the twins and a 1-year-old son unattended twice last month.

She's being held on $500,000 cash bail.

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