John M. Becker

Boy Who Played With Dolls Tortured to Death by Couple

Filed By John M. Becker | August 19, 2014 5:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: barbarity, beating, child abuse, evil, filicide, Gabriel Fernandez, graphic violence, murder, trigger warning

gabriel-fernandez.jpgRemember Jessica Dutro, the Oregon monster mother who, together with her boyfriend, beat her toddler to death because she thought he was gay?

A similar case has surfaced in California, and it's just as heartbreaking. Details are below, via the Los Angeles Times, but be warned, they are graphic and involve the vicious beating, homophobic taunting, and murder of a child.

Before 8-year-old Gabriel Fernandez [right] was allegedly beaten to death by his mother and her boyfriend, they doused him with pepper spray, forced him to eat his own vomit and locked him in a cabinet with a sock stuffed in his mouth to muffle his screams, according to court records made public Monday...

Gabriel's mother, Pearl Fernandez, called 911 on May 22, 2013, to report that her son was not breathing. She told sheriff's deputies who arrived at the apartment that Gabriel had fallen and hit his head on a dresser, according to testimony. When paramedics arrived, they found Gabriel naked in a bedroom, not breathing, with a cracked skull, three broken ribs and BB pellets embedded in his lung and groin. He died two days later.

"It was just like every inch of this child had been abused," testified James Cermak, a Los Angeles County Fire Department paramedic...

Fernandez and [boyfriend Isauro] Aguirre deliberately tortured the boy to death, hiding their tracks with forged doctor's notes and lies to authorities, Deputy Dist. Atty. Jonathan Hatami told the grand jury. "For eight straight months, he was abused, beaten and tortured more severely than many prisoners of war," Hatami said.

Believe it or not, it gets worse. More details after the jump.

Again, the Los Angeles Times:

The abuse worsened in the months leading up to Gabriel's death, according to testimony from two of his siblings, both of whom are minors. They said Gabriel was forced to eat cat feces, rotten spinach and his own vomit. He slept in a locked cabinet and wasn't let out to go to the bathroom. Fernandez and Aguirre called Gabriel gay, punished him when he played with dolls and forced him to wear girls' clothes to school, the siblings said.

Fernandez and Aguirre hit Gabriel with a belt buckle, a metal hanger, a small bat and a wooden club, Gabriel's brother said. Their mother once jabbed Gabriel in the mouth with a bat and knocked out several teeth, according to testimony...

Investigators searching the family's apartment after Gabriel's death found bloodstains, BB gun holes and a wooden club covered in his blood, according to testimony.

On the day of the fatal beating, Fernandez began hitting Gabriel because he didn't want to pick up his toys, his older brother testified. She dragged him into a bedroom, where Aguirre joined her, and the siblings heard screaming and banging, he said. "And that's when it all stopped," said the brother, 13. "It just went quiet."

Gabriel died as a result of blunt-force trauma and child neglect, James Kemp Ribe of the L.A. County coroner's office told the grand jury. "I have never seen this many skin injuries on one child," he said. [Emphasis mine.]

According to the Times, which reviewed more than 800 pages of court records, Gabriel's case slipped through the cracks on multiple occasions. Reports that Gabriel was being abused and feeling suicidal were investigated, but he was never removed from the home. Agents never checked underneath Gabriel's clothes for abuse-related injuries, and they never even wrote up a detailed report... because they "concluded there was no evidence of abuse."

Pearl Fernandez, 30, and Isauro Aguirre, 34, are facing charges of capital murder and a special circumstance of torture. They are currently awaiting trial. Let's hope little Gabriel receives the justice in death that he was denied in life.

h/t: Joe. My. God.

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