Brooklyn baby dies at home three months after judge returned her to abusive parents who lost custody when she was 3 weeks old after being found with broken ankles and fractured skull .
- Ella Vitalis was pronounced dead on September 20 following a brain hemorrhage.
- She was only one year old and had been living with her parents Lafayette Browne and Johnson Vitalis for three months.
- The New York Police Department is currently investigating the couple for the murder of the 1-year-old child.
- Judge Erik Pitchal allowed the girl to return to her parents after being placed in foster care.
A Brooklyn girl died three months after being left in the care of her abusive parents, a couple who lost custody of her after taking her to the hospital when she was three weeks old with broken ankles. , a skull fracture and a cerebral hemorrhage.
One-year-old Ella Vitalis was pronounced dead on September 20 at Maimonides Hospital in Brooklyn, five days after her parents Lafayette Browne, 29, and Johnson Vitalis, 28, called 911, saying she was She was suffocated while her father fed her.
Judge Erik Pitchal, appointed by De Blasio, allowed the girl to return to her parents
She had blunt force injuries to her head, bruises and cuts to her forehead and her eyes were swollen.
Doctors also noticed what looked like bite marks and she appeared to have a broken jaw.
Her mother claimed it was all because she was drinking “too much milk.” Details of her death and the horrific abuse she previously suffered were revealed today by The New York Times.
Neither parent has been charged or arrested, but the New York Police Department confirmed to DailyMail.com that the child’s death is being investigated as a homicide.
The couple had just regained custody of her, bringing her home on June 15 after De Blasio-appointed Judge Erik Pitchal gave them permission to live together again.
They had been separated for a year because in August 2022, doctors noticed Ella’s serious injuries when she was only three weeks old. Her parents had taken her and her older brother, Liam, to the hospital after police were called to their apartment for a domestic disturbance.
She and Liam entered the foster care system, but their father was allowed to visit them.
In September, a month after the incident that separated them, Johnson left the baby – then just a month old – with a bloody mouth during a visit meant to be supervised by his mother, Elsa.
It was so severe that a doctor ruled a sharp object must have been used to cause the “moderate” blood loss.
In June of this year, Judge Pitchal agreed to let the child live with his parents again despite the distressing history of abuse.
Between June and September, when Ella died, the parents failed to get her to a single check-in appointment.
Ella was on life support for five days before being pronounced dead.
She suffered a brain hemorrhage following a skull fracture.
The girl was found unconscious in an apartment in this Brooklyn building on September 15
Today, there are growing questions about why Judge Pitchal felt the parents were fit to take her home.
Judge Pitchal, a Yale graduate who was appointed to the bench in 2013.
The Brooklyn family court where he works did not respond to requests for comment Tuesday.
The New York City Administration for Children’s Services, which had requested that the children remain in foster care, also did not respond.
One of their representatives told the Times that deciding where to place a child was not “an exact science.”
It is not yet known whether Liam, the other child, is still in the couple’s care.
A male relative declined to comment on the matter when contacted by DailyMail.com on Tuesday.