Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Parents charged in death of boy, 4, in North York
Residents at the tot’s townhouse complex — in the Finch Ave.-Don Mills Rd. area — were as shocked to hear of his tragic demise as they were to learn of his existence.
“It’s scary to think there were two little kids (living) there and we’ve never, ever seen them,” Cecelia Frank, who lives a few doors away, said Tuesday. “It’s so sad.”
“It’s as if those kids were hidden or something,” the mother of three speculated.
Toronto Police say emergency crews responded to a 911 call at a townhome around 2:30 a.m. Monday.
“When we got there, we found a four-year-old boy without vital signs,” Const. Victor Kwong said.
The child was pronounced dead at the scene.
Kwong said homicide detectives were immediately notified because they typically probe any death of a child under five.
“It breaks my heart,” Frank said of the boy’s untimely death.
Like other neighbours, she was awakened when the flashing lights of emergency vehicles filled her home and she peaked out through an upstairs window.
“When you have little kids, you want to know what’s happening when there are so many cops around,” Frank explained.
Shortly after police, fire and EMS arrived in the normally quiet complex, she saw officers lead a man away in handcuffs.
Moments later, a woman was taken away in cuffs, as well.
Afterward, Frank said officers carried a child, believed to be the dead boy’s surviving sibling, from the house “wrapped in a blanket.”
The sibling, who she believes “couldn’t have been more than five years old,” was led to an awaiting police cruiser and driven away from the complex.
“That child was alive,” Frank said. “I’m not sure if it was a boy or a girl because it was dark, but it was a small child.”
She said her kids play outside all the time and she often sees many of the other young families in the complex outdoors, as well.
But Frank had never seen the accused couple or their youngsters before Monday.
The couple’s townhouse remained cordoned off with yellow police tape Tuesday as police officers gathered evidence.
Although the boy’s death was not immediately deemed a murder, Det.-Sgt. Pauline Gray and Det. Ted Lioumanis visited the scene Tuesday afternoon.
They refused to comment on the case, but Gray did confirm the parents are charged with failing to provide the necessities of life.
The accused man and woman remain in custody.
But police have not released their names, nor have they identified the victim.
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