A ten-year-old boy has died from horrific injuries including a lacerated spleen, a lacerated liver, a lacerated kidney, rib fractures on both sides of his body and bruising between his toes that prosecutors say were inflicted by his stepfather.
Young Ayden Wolfe was just 10-years old when he died on Saturday afternoon, and his stepfather, Ryan Cato, 34, has been arrested in his death.
Police responded to a call to the boy’s home in central Harlem where they found Ayden barely breathing, having fallen unconscious at the family’s fourth-floor apartment in the Saint Nicholas Houses.
Ayden Wolfe, 10, was killed in his apartment in Harlem over the weekend
An attempt to revive him with water failed to rouse the youngster.
He was taken to Harlem Hospital where he died shortly afterwards.
On Monday, Cato, the boy’s stepfather, was awaiting arraignment on murder charges in Manhattan Criminal Court.
Cato was dating Ayden’s mother, according to the New York Daily News.
Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said Ayden’s death was a ‘horrific case.’
The boy’s stepfather, Ryan Cato, was arrested on Monday, and arraigned on murder charges
Cato has a history of domestic violence arrests, including charges he choked the mother of his own children and assaulted a school bus driver in February
The boy’s injuries saw ‘extensive bruising to his face, the extremities and all over the body,’ Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison said.
‘Some injuries were old, but others were recent,’ Harrison explained.
Although police had not been to the apartment where the youngster died, a complaint was filed against the boy’s mother in 2010 soon after he was born.
The complaint involved the city’s child welfare agency and concerned alleged child neglect.
The News found that Cato has a history of domestic violence arrests, including charges he choked the mother of his own children.
Ayden Wolfe was found unconscious in his living room and was said to be ‘covered in bruises old and new’
Many who live in the Saint Nicholas houses said they had heard about domestic problems involving the family.
‘From the information I have, people knew the family had been through trauma and in a bad situation,’ Sheba Simpson, a neighbor and a candidate for the NYC Council, told News10.
‘Where are the services and resources that would have mitigated this murder?’
In December, Cato was arrested after allegedly choking the mother of his own kids in front of their two children inside their apartment in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
On that occasion, Cato was charged with assault, menacing and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
A small tribute has been set up for the slain 10-year-old at the Saint Nicholas Houses
Cato is alleged to have hit the children’s mother in the face several times before putting his hands around her neck and applying pressure.
Cato was also charged in February with assaulting the driver of a yellow school bus in Brooklyn.
A woman who claimed to be a cousin of Ayden said the little boy was ‘super smart, super intelligent,’ and wanted to become a professional YouTube gamer.
‘He was very technologically savvy, well-mannered,’ said the woman who identified herself only as Jennifer A to the New York Times.
A woman who claimed to be a cousin of Ayden said the little boy was ‘super smart, super intelligent,’ and wanted to become a professional YouTube gamer
Jennifer said Ayden was his mother’s only child and that she doted on him. ‘They were always together,’ she said.
She said Ayden’s mother had survived brain cancer as a teenager and that it had left her disabled. ‘She’s very protective over him — she was a good mom,’ Jennifer said. ‘I don’t understand what went wrong.’
‘I’ve never seen a bruise, fracture, anything on him,’ she added saying that she had never noticed any signs of abuse.
A friend of the family said that they had never never seen any kind of bruises on the boy