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Mother charged in girl's death

Mom's boyfriend also charged
October 28, 2008 7:24:03 AM PDT
Police have charged a mother in the beating death of her 11-year old daughter in Brooklyn. The mother, Florenzia Vazquez was charged with murder, manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide on Monday night. Police say the suspect confessed to beating her daughter, 11-year-old Alejandra, with a mop handle so hard that it broke in two.

The incident allegedly took place on Thursday, but it was not until Sunday where a man renting a room in the apartment saw the girl, and called police.

It's unclear how long the child had been dead or if she could have been saved had help been called sooner. The death was ruled a homicide. An autopsy performed Monday found the girl had been beaten to death with a blunt object and had bruises in various stages of healing, meaning she had been beaten before.

The child's death was reminiscent of the slaying of 7-year-old Nixzmary Brown, who was tortured and starved before she was beaten to death by her stepfather. Nixzmary's mother was convicted of manslaughter for not calling 911 as the girl lay dying on the floor of their apartment. Her stepfather was convicted of manslaughter for delivering the fatal blows.

Police say Alejandra arrived from Mexico last month to live with her mother. She had reportedly told friends that she had been beaten.

Neighbor Nancy Irizarry says she wishes she heard or saw anything at the three-story apartment building on Atlantic Avenue, anything that would indicate that the little girl who always sat on the stoop was in trouble.

"I am overwhelmed," Irizarry said. "I can't believe this is happening in our neighborhood. They were just a normal family. She was cheery, mother was cheery."

Alejandra had a 14-year-old sister who was removed from the home last January due to abuse allegations. Vasquez had both children with her ex-husband.

The victim reportedly told police she hated everything associated with her father. Three other children in the home ages 3, 6, and one were also removed. Vasquez's boyfriend lives in the apartment. He was charged with manslaughter and other offenses.

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STORY BY: Eyewitness News reporter Anthony Johnson
WEB PRODUCED BY: Scott Curkin

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