Boy thrown off Upper West Side building by dad laid to rest

Andy Field has the story.
December 26, 2013 1:19:27 PM PST
Heartbroken friends and family gathered in Manhattan Thursday morning to bid a final farewell to a 3-year-old boy who was thrown to his death off an Upper West Side high-rise by his father.

Funeral services were held for Kirill Kanarikov at the Russian Orthodox Church on East 93rd Street. The procession then traveled to Nyack, where the boy was laid to rest.

Officials believe a bitter custody battle drove Kirill's father, 35-year-old Dmitriy Kanarikov, to toss the boy from the top of the 52nd-story apartment building before jumping to his own death.

Kirill's mother, Svetlana Kanarikov, said in a statement that she had been nervous about her son's visits with his father, and she initially wanted them to be supervised. But she relented after a December 5 court appearance.

"The father never did anything violent against the child before," Kanarikov said of the two previous visits in a statement issued Monday night through a lawyer. "Both times, Kirill was happy after seeing his dad. Skype calls were also going well."

He had picked up Kirill at 10 a.m. Sunday at a Manhattan police precinct - a neutral site negotiated in advance by the parents - to spend time with him for the first time unsupervised.

The couple had been married four years and separated in August, and Svetlana Kanarikov said she had taken action after a domestic violence incident. Their split was acrimonious. She left their Brooklyn apartment and moved in with her family in Fair Lawn, N.J., enrolling her son in school. In addition to Kirill, Dmitriy Kanarikov had wanted their house and other property, too, Svetlana Kanarikov said.

"He said he would take the child away and I will 'shoot myself from grief,'" she said. "This was his sick way to take Kirill away from me."

Officers responding to an emergency call reporting two jumpers from the building near Columbus Circle and Lincoln Center found Kanarikov and the boy on the lower rooftops of two separate nearby buildings.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene, and Kirill was pronounced dead at a hospital, police said. A witness said the boy was wearing Christmas pajamas.

"Kirill was a very sweet, wonderful child, who was loved very much," his mother said. "He will forever live on in my heart."

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)


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