On June 20, 10-year-old Anthony Avalos was found unresponsive at his family’s home having suffered severe head injuries and cigarette burns covered his body.
He died on the Thursday 21st.
According to reports, the boy had recently come out as gay saying “I like boys.” Authorities believe homophobia played a part in his death.
The boyfriend of the boy’s mother, who’s a member of a violent gang in Southern California, has now been arrested and charged with the murder of the 10-year-old.
From NBC News:
Anthony Avalos was taken to a hospital on June 20 after his mother, Heather Barron, called 911 to report that he had been injured in a fall, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. He was not breathing and unresponsive when emergency workers found him in his Lancaster home, and he died the next day.
Anthony Avalos’ death bears a striking resemblance to a 2013 case in neighboring Palmdale, less than 10 minutes from Lancaster. Eight-year-old Gabriel Fernandez died in May 2013 after being routinely beaten and starved by his mother and her boyfriend. Prosecutors said Gabriel was systematically abused because his mother’s boyfriend thought the boy was gay.
At a news conference on Wednesday, Sheriff Jim McDonnell said Barron’s boyfriend, Kareem Leiva, 32, had been arrested on murder charges and was being held on $2 million bail.
First Gabriel Fernandez. Now Anthony Avalos. They were abused and killed for being gay. And if we don’t do something, it’s gonna keep happening to more children. Homophobia kills. Rest In Power Angels. #RIPGabrielFernandez #RIPAnthonyAvalos #LGBT pic.twitter.com/hsRWZpHpUJ— mrak 🙂 (@markkaanthony) June 26, 2018