10-year-old bisexual boy’s parents ‘forced his siblings to beat him’ until he died

A 10-year-old boy who died of abuse just weeks after coming out as bisexual was whipped, beaten and starved by his mother and her boyfriend, prosecutors have said.

Court documents filed after Heather Maxine Barron and Kareem Ernesto Leiva were charged by Californian authorities for the torture and murder of Anthony Avalos alleged that the child’s siblings were forced to take part in the abuse.

The boy’s torture, prosecutors say, included being slammed into the bedroom floor, whipped with a belt and chord, forbidden from using the bathroom and having hot sauce poured into his mouth.

Anthony Avalos came out just weeks before his death (Justice for Anthony/Facebook)

They said his parents forced Anthony and his eight sisters and brothers to fight each other, as well as making the other children – aged between 11 months and 12 years old – watch Anthony in order to keep him standing or kneeling.

“At one point,” the documents allege, “Anthony could not walk, was unconscious lying on his bedroom floor for hours, was not provided medical attention, and could not eat on his own.

“During the five or six days mentioned above, all nine children were residing in the Lancaster apartment where the crimes took place.”

Anthony in the hospital (gofundme)

Local authorities have removed Anthony’s siblings from the house, according to the New York Post, and they are being taken care of by county child welfare officers.

The horrific injuries suffered by Anthony were laid out by Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Jonathan Hatami, who was also a prosecutor in the case of Gabriel Fernandez, an eight-year-old who was brutally tortured and killed because his mother Pearl Fernandez and her boyfriend, Isauro Aguirre, thought he was gay.

The motion states that when he was brought into hospital, medical records show the 10-year-old was in full cardiac arrest, had to be intubated because he couldn’t breathe on his own, had suffered a “traumatic brain injury” and had a brain bleed.

Kareem Ernesto Leiva in court (WCMH-TV)

Anthony also had reddened eyes, as well as cuts, bruises and abrasions all over his body, from his forehead to his
feet, the documents indicate, WCMH-TV has reported.

Brandon Nichols, deputy director of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Families, previously revealed that Anthony had said “he liked boys and girls.”

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