Anthony Jose Archibeque-Martinez & Elizabeth Archibeque-Martinez & grandma charged w/ murder after Flagstaff, 6 year old Arizona boy kept in closet dies of malnutrition.
Anthony Jose Archibeque-Martinez, 23, Elizabeth Archibeque-Martinez, 26, and Ann Marie Martinez, 50, were arrested and booked into the Coconino County Jail, KNXV reported. They were charged with first-degree homicide and two counts of child abuse.
Police went to a Flagstaff home Monday after receiving a report of an unresponsive child, KTVK reported. Officers began lifesaving efforts when they arrived but were unable to revive the boy, who was pronounced dead at the scene by firefighters.
Detectives interviewed the boy’s parents, who admitted to keeping him and his 7-year-old brother in a bedroom closet without food, KNPX reported. The parents estimated the children were kept isolated in the closet for about a month.
The parents and grandmother reportedly admitted to police that the boys had been ‘kept in the closet because they were stealing food, by sneaking out at night when the parents slept.’
Both were malnourished to the point of not looking their ages KNXV reported.
The Arizona Department of Child Safety took custody of the boy’s surviving siblings, who are 2, 4, and 7, KTVK reported.
But there’s more.
CHILD KEPT IN A CLOSET: The Flagstaff community is mourning the loss of a 6-year-old boy who was found unresponsive & malnourished. Police say his parents & grandma admitted to keeping him in a small closet for at least a month. His three siblings are now in DCS care. #12News pic.twitter.com/RIEmt2btKE
— Bianca Buono (@BiancaBuono) March 4, 2020
How could anyone not know?
Monday’s episode was not the first time that DCS has dealt with this family.
In February 2013, DCS received a report of two different allegations of abuse toward one of the siblings, but both of those allegations were unsubstantiated, People reports.
The parents participated in voluntary in-home services, and the case was closed when those were completed in July of that year, according to a statement released by DCS.
Told the agency in part: ‘Keeping children safe is the Department’s top priority. However, DCS cannot investigate child abuse and neglect unless we receive a report from the community.’