Things That Matter

Latino Parents Charged In The Horrifying Abuse And Death Of 12-Year-Old Boy

Two Latino parents in Indiana are being charged with neglect and confinement after restraining and starving a young boy to death in Indiana, People reports.

According to officials, 12-year-old Eduardo Fosso was a victim of childhood abuse, with his father and step-mother taking photos and videos of him in restraints and a fitted dog shock-collar around his neck while in a bathtub.

“[He] lived a very sad life, a lot of times under restraint, and his life gradually diminished after repeated acts of abuse by his father with the … knowledge of his stepmother,” said Monroe County Sheriff Brad Swain during a news conference on Tuesday.

The boy’s father, Luis Fosso, 32, could also face murder charges should a forensic test determine that the child’s death is linked to his mistreatment.

“The initial thoughts are that he starved to death,” he said.

Monroe County coroner Joani Shields added that the child was “severely emaciated,” weighing about 50 to 55 pounds.

Fossi and Dayan Media Flores, 25, who were both investigated by child protective services in Florida, where they used to reside, were passing through Indiana for work. They are contracted employees hired to place ads that promote a traveling circus. The couple was accompanied by three other children, a 9-year-old girl, 5-year-old boy and 2-year-old boy. The youth, who appeared to be in good physical health, were placed with a child protection agency.

On Thursday, the father brought Eduardo to Bloomington Hospital after he stopped breathing. The boy appeared to be getting sick while the family was out together hanging leaflets.

“The stepmom said ‘I think we need to go back to the hotel,’ and at that point they did … and he continued to decline from there,” sheriff’s detective Lt. Jennifer Allen said.

The child was declared dead at 3:05 a.m., only 13 minutes after he arrived at the hospital. Employees told law enforcement that the boy exhibited “signs of extreme abuse.” Investigators soon obtained a search warrant and returned to the family’s motel room, where they found chains, ankle and wrist restraints as well as the dog shock-collar. They also discovered videos and photos on the parents’ cell phones and web-based security system that showed how they abused the child.

The parents denied starving Eduardo, though they both disclosed that the father would physically abuse him.

“I was given the explanation that (Eduardo) was the child that acted up the most,” Allen said. “He was the one that they always had issues with.”

In older videos and photographs found, Eduardo appeared to be somewhat “of a normal, happy little boy,” Allen continued. Still, investigators are currently looking into other towns the family visited for work, including Bedford, Nashville and Kokomo, for additional evidence of mistreatment or charges in other jurisdictions.

A sheriff on the case said it was “horrendous” and “beyond anything I’ve worked” in his 20 years as a child abuse investigator.

The couple is currently being held on a $500,000 bond in the Monroe County Correctional Center.

Read: Family Of Slain Chicago Teen Whose Son Was Ripped From Her Womb Is Raising Funds For Newborn’s Medical Bills — Here’s How You Can Help

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Gabriel Fernandez’s Mother, Pearl Fernandez, Is Trying to Have Her Murder Conviction Thrown Out

Things That Matter

Gabriel Fernandez’s Mother, Pearl Fernandez, Is Trying to Have Her Murder Conviction Thrown Out

Photos: State of California, Gabriel’s Justice/Facebook

Gabriel Fernandez’s mother, Pearl Fernandez, is trying to have her murder conviction thrown out. The 37-year-old woman has been in jail since 2018 for the murder and torture of her eight-year old son.

Pearl Fernandez is petitioning the court for resentencing, hoping to have her first-degree murder and/or second-degree murder charges thrown out.

Fernandez is hoping to have her sentence vacated based off of new changes to the California state penal code. “I think that she feels that somehow maybe, you know, the special circumstance will be dismissed or maybe she’ll have a chance that the D.A. will agree with the petition,” Deputy District Attorney Jonathan Hatami said to CBSLA.

In June 2018, a judge sentenced Pearl Fernandez to life without parole. The judge charged Pearl Fernandez with the 2013 torture and killing of her eight-year-old son, Gabriel Fernandez.

On May 22, 2013, Gabriel Fernandez died after suffering a fatal beating from his mother. Pearl Fernandez was allegedly angry that he didn’t clean up his toys.

The details of Pearl and her boyfriend’s lengthy torture campaign against Gabriel Fernandez are both gruesome and numerous. Over the course of his eight-month stay with Isauro Aguirre, the couple broke his bones, burned him with cigarettes, pepper-sprayed him, and forced him to eat his own vomit as well as animal feces. And that is just a short-list of what they did.

The case came to national attention after the release of the 2020 Netflix documentary, “The Trials of Gabriel Fernandez“. The documentary shone a spotlight on the insidious nature of child abuse. It also highlighted the systematic failures of the social services system that fails to protect children.

Elected officials have expressed their disgust at Pearl Fernandez for trying to escape justice by taking advantage of updated laws.

“The policies and directives from my office and these new laws created by the Legislature are emboldening murderers of children to apply to be re-sentenced,” said Deputy DA Hatami to City News Service. “This is completely unfair to the surviving families and their loved ones.”

He continued: “Families now have to relive all the horror that was perpetrated upon a small and helpless child. Based upon all the evidence presented at the grand jury, which was made public, and the jury trial, Pearl Fernandez was a major participant in the torture and murder of little Gabriel.”

It seems obvious by the fact that Pearl Fernandez is trying to get out of jail after torturing her son to death, that she isn’t remorseful about her actions.

Any other mother who killed her son would probably want to spend the rest of her life in jail instead of trying to find a way to get out of it.

If you believe someone you know is experiencing–or committing–child abuse, there are resources to help. Call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. Staying vigilant could help save a child like Gabriel Fernandez.

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Nanny Cam Footage Shows Months of Torture and Child Abuse that Led to the Death of 9-Year-Old Emrik Osuna

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Nanny Cam Footage Shows Months of Torture and Child Abuse that Led to the Death of 9-Year-Old Emrik Osuna

Photo via GoFundMe

A tragic story of child abuse out of Idaho has been rocking the nation. After weeks of starvation, beatings, and torture at the hands of his father and stepmother, 9-year-old Emrik Osuna died from his injuries.

This week, an Idaho judge ruled that there is enough evidence for the Erik and Monique Osuna’s murder trials to proceed.

Police found nanny cam footage that was evidence of the torture that Emrik faced for months. The footage shows months of endless forced exercise, physical and verbal abuse, and the systematic starvation of the little boy. Footage shows his stepmother pulling him from the ground by the hair and “swinging him around like a rag doll”. It also captures her beating him with a pan and cursing at him.

Prosecutors say that Emrik was fed only a diet of rice and water the weeks before he died. Emrik’s parents also forced him to sleep on the floor or in a hall closet. By the time his lifeless body was taken to the hospital on September 1st, 2020, he was practically skeletal.

“The little boy had bruises all over his body, specifically on his buttocks, groin, legs and torso,” said prosecutor Tamara Kelly. “Some of the bruises were extremely large and essentially covered the back of his body.”

The couple is facing respective first-degree murder charges. Erik Osuna, the 9-year-old’s biological father, is also facing charges of evidence tampering, inflicting bodily injury and injury to a child. According to reports, the boy’s stepmother, Monique Osuna, was the primary abuser of Emrik. However, Erik rarely, if ever, intervened to help his son.

The day that Emrik’s health declined rapidly, his parents hesitated to take him to the hospital out of fear. Hours before Emrik died, Erik Osuna allegedly texted his wife, Monique, saying, “I know you are scared. I am too.”

Emrik Osuna’s relatives are shocked and heartbroken at the tragic death of the 9-year-old boy.

“I just started bawling, started crying – I just can’t believe it,” said Marie Osuna, Emrik’s aunt, about when she first heard of his death. “It just shocks me. I don’t know how anybody can do that to a child.”

According to relatives, Emrik’s mother also abused him and his twin siblings before police arrested her. Marie Osuna said that Emrik’s father was “in and out of his life” for years before gaining full custody of him. In the meantime, Marie Osuna took care of Emrik in Orange County.

“He was just like one of our own. He loved us. He would call me mom,” Marie Osuna told KTBV 7. “He was just a good kid, he was happy. I just don’t understand what happened.”

“Why would they starve him like that?” she asked. “What did he do to deserve to be starved or even to be hit, like a dog? He just needed love. He just needed love, that’s it, and to feel safe.”

If you believe someone you know is experiencing–or committing–child abuse, there are resources to help. Call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. Staying vigilant could help save a child like Emrik’s life.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com