Friday, January 26, 2007

Toddler Dies In Hide-And-Seek Game

NEW YORK, Jan. 26, 2007
(CBS/AP) A 2-year-old boy was found dead in a plastic storage container in his family's apartment on Thursday after what his mother called a fatal game of hide-and-seek with his young siblings, police said.

The 24-year-old mother told police that she last saw little Anthony Pena alive at about 9 p.m. Wednesday, when she put him and two siblings, ages 4 and 6, to bed in their Bronx home.

She claimed that during the night the children sneaked out of bed to play hide-and-seek. She said one of the older children apparently put Anthony in the container and went back to sleep without letting him out.

The mother awoke Thursday to discover Anthony's body inside the container.

She and the boy's 28-year-old father were questioned by police, but there were no arrests.

The New York Daily News said the parents had no criminal records and police had never been called to their home before. The city's Administration for Children's Services had also never been involved with the family, police said.

The two surviving siblings were taken from their parents' custody, but caseworkers were expected to return them after determining Anthony's cause of death.

© MMVII, CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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This is a terrible tragedy. There have been plenty of times when my children have gotten out of bed and I either did not hear them at all or did not hear them right away...the most notable time was when my oldest got a hold of some finger paints and gave it to his younger brother to play with in the crib. I had to give my youngest son a bath at 11 at night. There were other times there room had been spotless when put to bed and a complete mess when they woke up...which means one or both of them got up in the middle of the night. It CAN and HAS happened to everyone, of that I am sure. And to all those parents and govt. agencies condemning these poor parents...are you 100% positive and sure that your children never got into anything while you were sleeping or snuck outside in the middle of the night and then snuck back in? Look back at all those little things that happened that could not be explained away and think about if your children may or may not have been the one to do it. You very may well be singing a different tune about these parents. They just lost a child which is terrible, I know, although I lost mine through misscarriage. These parents have had their other children taken away from them until govt. agencies decide to give them back. It is a travesty that this family cannot grieve together and that these chidlren who will have to live with the fact that they indrectly killed their sibling can't be with the two people that will be able to help them out the most.
Posted by scullymom at 01:41 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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mdc76082 you should be ashamed of yourself. Would it have made a difference if the child/family was white, black, green or purple? Or would it have made a difference if they had been British or German? No it would not have mattered. And for your information they do have fasteners on storage boxes that snap and you would have a difficult time opening it from the inside out, it is difficult to open them from the outside alot of times!!!!!! You should keep your vulgar and inappropriate remarks to yourself. I hope that nothing ever happens to your child or family member that is a freak accident you PIG!!!
Posted by nolesfan1997 at 01:37 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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As a Mom of 4, my heart goes out to this family for the tragic ACCIDENT that has changed their lives forever. I also send out my deepest sympathy to everyone posting judgemental comments about this family and this incident and I can only hope that something like this never happens to them or someone close to them. To all of the family and close friends of this family - may you find peace within your sorrow and please let the other children know they are not to blame, either are the parents....
Posted by notaturkey at 01:33 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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Hey mdc76082 ... I guess you think this kid deserved to die because he is Hispanic? Too bad it wasn't you instead. ;-)
Posted by SPARKLING2 at 01:30 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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Hey orville, heres my accusations: First of all they are of hispanic origin (the father definitely), secondly they are young, dumb and full of ***. Thirdly, I will bet my income, home, etc., they don't speak a lick of english and R illegal aliens. Fourth and final, I bet some well-to-do American attorney's (of hispanic decent) will come a knockin on their door to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the container manufacturer. After all, to a young illegal alien couple, a ton of money will replace any child. Sorry orville, but this family doesn't deserve squat from me. I'm already paying for it in the welfare assistance! It's a shame that the child had to die. I base this tragedy from the environment he was raised in. Oh, and did the lid on this container lock? I've never heard of one. You say tragic, I say fishy.
Posted by mdc76082 at 01:22 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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It's so sad to see what parenting in America has come to today. I feel so sorry for parents. You can't discipline your children without intervention from Social Services, oh and God forbid an "accident" occur. If this couple gets their other children back they will be lucky. What happend here is clearly a tragedy, but what is happening all over the nation as far as our kids are concerned is an even larger tragedy on a grander scale. My thoughts are with the parents at this difficult time.
Posted by itogood4u at 01:06 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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Just to let you know I don't have kids, but I am an uncle many times over. I think having kids makes it easier to sympathize here, but any level headed individual knows that tragedy can strike anyone at any time. To blame the parents is the American way these days. It always has to be somebody's fault.
Posted by jonw1115 at 12:51 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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You think you hear EVERY sound that your child makes during the night but you don't. You just hear the ones that wake you. One day you'll find a half-eaten bologna sandwich and wonder where it came from, a mess in the bathroom, or just any old occurrence that you slept through. You like to think that you will wake up at the slightest indication of noise from your child but you won't always. There's nothing wrong with that! Some people are lighter sleepers than others, some sleep more soundly. There's no way you can turn on a switch with parenthood that makes you wake up EVERY time your child moves, twitches, goes to the bathroom or plays by himself or herself during the night. You just do your best! Taking away her children? Don't be ridiculous. So many of you are being holier than thou because an accident happened for which you claim you could never have "allowed" in your home but you are not present in your children's lives 24/7 and things, as terrible as they sometimes are, just happen.

S.S. former New York State Emergency Medical Technician-Critical Care (I have a friend who lost a child to SIDS, would you blame the parent for that too?)
Posted by Puzzler125 at 12:50 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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Yes this is a parents worst nightmare..From the comments so far you can tell who has children and the ones that dont that think they have the authority to judge.
Posted by hollyt2 at 12:42 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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This is strange to me. I'm a mother of two active boys and my ears are on 24/7. Even throughout the night. I hear them always because I am in tune to life around me. I get up several times a night to check on my kids, to cover them up with blankets and to check for any onset of a fever. To have this mother sleep without a care in the world just doesn't make any sense. The siblings didn't mean to do it but you would think the parents would hear the kids playing, the toddler crying for help when he couldn't get out, etc. It just sounds too fishy. We'll see what they investigate.
Posted by getreal at 12:40 PM : Jan 26, 2007
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