The aunt of four-year-old Ethan Ali, whose lifeless body was discovered covered in bruises yesterday, has confessed to beating the toddler.
According to The New York Daily News, paramedics were called the Brownsville apartment shared by the boy’s mother and aunt at approximately 1:30 p.m. after Christina “Ninee” Dale’s boyfriend, Kenroy Skeet, walked in and saw her cradling the body of the toddler. According to little Ethan’s grandfather, Dale, 21, beat the child frequently.
“They did it all the time. They beat him and they beat him. He was always bruised,” LeRoy Ali said of Dale and her boyfriend. “She beat him with the belt. I told her to stop.”
Sadly, Ethan’s father, Anthony Ali, did not learn of his son’s passing until he arrived at the scene of the crime.
“Ninee killed Ethan!” his father reportedly told him.
“She did what? Oh, my God!” he replied, according to reports.
The child’s mother Natasha Ali, who worked as a home health aide, didn’t learn of the tragedy until approximately 5 p.m. when she arrived home to find investigators combing through her apartment.
After being taken into custody, investigators say that Dale admitted during a video interview to whipping the boy. Despite the fact that the child had visible injuries, medical examiners will still have to conduct an autopsy to determine his cause of death. Investigators suspect that he was beaten to death; however, they are awaiting autopsy results.
“He was a beautiful boy. Friendly, lively. He always liked to play,” said neighbor Elise Witty.
According police the family had no prior cases with the Administration for Children’s Services.