2014-02-07 / Top Stories

Two Year Old Dead; Mother Held

By Dan Guarino

On Monday, February 3rd, police responded to an emergency 911 call to aid a child at 141 Beach 56th Place.

What officers from the 101st Precinct found when they arrived was an unconscious Kevasia Edwards, age two.

The child was unresponsive and according to police showed bruising around her mouth. She was immediately transported to St. John’s Hospital, arriving already in cardiac arrest. Doctors pronounced her dead just after midnight.

On Wednesday, February 5th, her mother, Ashley Diaz, was arrested and charged in the fatal beating.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown has announced that Diaz will be arraigned on 2nd Degree Murder and Assault in the 1st Degree and could face up to 25 years to life in prison if convicted.

“The defendant has been charged with causing the death of her own child,” Brown said, “a defenseless two-year-old girl who suffered greatly in her short life. The actions of the defendant are totally incomprehensible.”

A preliminary autopsy report by the Chief Medical Examiner revealed that the child had suffered multiple fresh and old bruising to her face, neck, torso and legs, multiple scalp abrasions and lacerations, multiple scars of varying ages about her body and other markings consistent with trauma. Examination also revealed two rib fractures with underlying liver injury.

According to the District Attorney’s office, “The autopsy report also alleged that the report’s preliminary medical findings were consistent with abusive head trauma with multiple, violent impacts to her head and body.”

After investigation by 101th Precinct Detective, Queens Homicide and Queens Homicide Squads, the Queens DA confirmed that a neighbor who watched Kevasia on Monday afternoon stated she appeared to be fine and showed no marks on her face. This was about 5:30 p.m.

At 11:15 p.m. the neighbor received a call from Diaz, the child’s mother, telling her Kevasia was not breathing. According to the neighbor, when she returned to Diaz’ apartment, she found the child unresponsive on the floor. While she began to administer CPR, she observed the child’s face was red and bruised, her lip bleeding and her teeth pushed in and jutting out in different directions and missing.

Diaz was expected to be arraigned on Thursday afternoon. Assistant District Attorney Leigh Bishop, Supervisor of the District Attorney Child Homicide/Assault Prosecutions Unit will be prosecuting the case.

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