Los Angeles Father Charged With Murder of 4-Year-Old Son

June 11, 2019 Updated: June 11, 2019

A 24-year-old father has been charged with murdering his 4-year-old son, who died on June 6 after paramedics found him in a critical condition in his Los Angeles home.

Hirwin Calderon-Ordonez faces one felony count each of murder and assault on a child causing death, according to a statement from the LA County District Attorney’s Office.

Justin Sontay-Oxlaj, 4, was allegedly beaten to death by his father on June 6, the prosecutor said.

According to the district attorney, Calderon-Ordonez’s bail was set at $2 million. He faces a possible maximum sentence of 25 years to life in a state prison, if found guilty.

The case remains under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department, Juvenile Division.

The boy’s parents had moved into the home on the 1600 block of East 47th Street a few days before authorities were called to the property in the early hours of June 6, according to ABC7. They found the boy in critical condition with signs of physical trauma, and transported him to a hospital, where he later died.

According to KTLA, when first responders arrived the boy was not breathing.

The 1600 block on East 47th Street in Los Angeles, California. (Screenshot/Google Maps)

He had been beaten to death, the prosecutor said, according to the district attorney’s statement.

According to ABC7, neighbors said they had heard fighting and saw signs of abuse between the parents.

According to Fox11, a coroner ruled the following day that the cause of death was blunt force trauma. However, the coroner’s online records show the cause of death as deferred pending additional investigation, according to the news outlet.

The father was the person who called 911, according to Fox11, and the boy’s mother was not at home at the time.

He has pleaded not guilty.

According to Fox, the family residence is on the 4600 block of Honduras Street, which is adjacent to the 1600 block of East 47th Street cited by other sources as the address.

The house on East 47th Street where a 4-year-old boy was found suffering from critical injuries on June 6, before he died in a hospital. (Screenshot/Google Maps)

Filicide

According to a study from Brown University published in 2014, instances of filicide, or the killing of one’s child or children, occurs about 500 times every year.

A father killing a son was the most common filicide scenario, followed by a mother killing a son, a mother killing a daughter, and a father killing a daughter.

Lead author Dr. Timothy Mariano, a third-year psychiatry resident in the Alpert Medical School of Brown University, said the three underlying motives appear to be mental illness, high levels of testosterone, and parents, particularly young mothers, feeling they’re unable to provide care for their children.

The authors said neither the statistics nor the hypotheses can definitively explain filicide.

Follow Simon on Twitter: @SPVeazey
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