Police say they arrested and charged the mother's boyfriend, 36-year-old Kenneth Lynch, with manslaughter.
Police were called to the Sotomayor Houses in Soundview Thursday night and found little Messiah Allen unconscious with bruises on his face.
The child was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
The NYC Medical Examiner said the boy suffered multiple blunt force injuries and determined his cause of death a homicide.
Last week, the mother took Messiah to Jacobi Hospital, claiming he was injured falling out of a stroller. Sources said that Thursday night, the boyfriend claimed that the child fell off of the toilet. Police were questioning the boyfriend.
Althea Johnson, who considered Messiah her godson, said she noticed a change when the mother's boyfriend moved into the boy's apartment. She said the boy showed signs of abuse that his mother attributed to falls.
"He was a happy-go-lucky little boy, but I noticed the visible bruises on his body," a neighbor said.
Johnson made a statement to the Administration for Children's Services Friday, which she admitted was a call she should have made earlier.
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