2-Year-Old Boy's Death Under Investigation - NBC Bay Area

2-Year-Old Boy's Death Under Investigation



    Toddler's Death Sparks Abuse Investigation

    A young boy died of injuries that police say may be from child abuse just before his third birthday in Westchester. Authorities say the case is eerily similar to the death of 10-year-old Anthony Avalos last month. John Cádiz Klemack reports for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Published Tuesday, July 10, 2018)

    An investigation is underway in Westchester after a 2-year-old boy died under suspicious circumstances inside his grandparent's home.

    Police say the death is similar to the death of another boy in Lancaster.

    Sources close to the Los Angeles investigation death say the boy was found unresponsive in his grandparents' home in Westchester on July 3, and later died at a hospital.

    A neighbor says police swarmed his street.

    "I saw cops out here for a long time the other night," said Jonathan McDonald. "I was wondering what they were doing."

    A source close to the investigation says the case is eerily similar to the abuse death of Anthony Avalos in Lancaster — with bruising on his body as well as internal injuries.

    The coroner has yet to perform an official autopsy one week after the boy's death.

    The family owns a dry cleaners in Culver City. Residents of the building say the shop's been closed for the last week.

    Blanca Brito, who runs a salon in the same building, says the boy's grandmother runs the place and that the boy would often come with his mother to play.

    "I saw the kid, yes, but I never saw any problems," she said.

    Sources tell NBC4 Damien was at the dry cleaners the day he died, before his mom's boyfriend picked him up and took him to his grandparents' house to bathe him.

    According to sources, the boyfriend claims Damien fell in the tub, which is why he took him to the hospital.

    NBC4 has been unable to reach Damien's mother and her boyfriend. They have not been arrested.

    Damien's father, Oscar Ventura, was visibly shaken, saying only that he wanted justice for his son, who was not in his care at the time of his death.