4-Year-Old Boy's Torturer Watched Him Die, Prosecutors Say
MIDTOWN — She watched him die.
Transgender performance artist Kryzie King tortured 4-year-old Myls Dobson for two weeks — starving, beating, cutting and burning him — until Wednesday morning when he finally succumbed in the bathroom of her luxury Midtown high-rise, prosecutors said at King's arraignment Friday.
"She described watching Myls die right in front of her. He was slumped over in the bathtub," Assistant District Attorney Nicole Blumberg told the judge during King's arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court on assault and reckless endangerment charges. "She watched until his body completely shut down."
An initial autopsy was inconclusive for the cause of death, but prosecutors vowed to pursue murder charges once the final results come back.
King told detectives that she locked Myls outside in the freezing cold, denied him food, and burned him with a hot oven rack, and then, in his final moments on Jan. 8, watched his eyelids flutter to a close, never to reopen again.
She then waited up to an hour or more to call for help for the boy, Blumberg added, making cellphone calls to chat with friends in the interim.
While in the care of King, Myls lost 20-25 pounds, and hadn't had anything significant to eat since Dec. 26, according to the criminal complaint.
"When she took custody of him, he was a happy, healthy, well-nourished boy," Blumberg said. "When they found him, his lifeless body was burned, bruised and cut from head to toe and emaciated."
King admitted to investigators that the last real meal she gave the boy was on Dec. 26, which she considered a "Christmas meal," sources said.
King's lawyer, Bryan Konoski, said his client, who was shaking visibly as she sat in the front row for an hour awaiting the arraignment, was depressed over the charges.
"At this point in time it is not a homicide case, although there are a lot of allegations by the people related to homicide," Konoski said.
King, 27, took the boy in on Dec. 18, a day before her new lover, the boy's father, Okee Wade, was arrested in Brooklyn on a warrant for skipping out on a court hearing on charges of stealing from bank accounts in Atlantic City, according to police records and sources.
She was ordered held on $500,000 bond Friday. The judge ordered King, who prosectors claim has ties to Jamaica, to surrender her passport. She is due back in court on Jan. 15.
King told investigators she tried to discipline the boy to "keep control" of him while he was in her custody, and soon escalated to beating the boy with a belt and locking him inside the bathroom alone.
"She remorselessly detailed binding his wrists and ankles for two to three hours and gagged him with a cloth to muffle his screams," the prosecutor told the judge.
On Jan. 7, the night before his death, Dobson begged King for some food from McDonald's, sources said.
King flew into a rage at the boy, beat him and left him alone on the floor of her living room with the lights off, sources said. She had been leaving him alone and locked in the bathroom for long stretches of time but he refused to go inside the bathroom on Tuesday night, sources said.
Soon after, King admitted to invesigators that she pushed the boy out onto her 11th-floor balcony overlooking the Hudson River and locked him out there, leaving him to freeze in the 9-degree weather for an hour wearing nothing but his T-shirt and underwear, sources said. Sources believe the boy may have been left outside for even longer than that.
The case has raised troubling parallels to the Nixzmary Brown case, in which a 7-year-old Brooklyn girl was beaten to death by her parents after she went into the refrigerator and tried to get yogurt without permission. She had also been starved and routinely beaten, and weighed a gaunt 37 pounds when she died on Jan. 11, 2006, police said. Brown's death led to sweeping changes in the Administration for Children's Services, which oversees child welfare in the city.
Custody of Myls was awarded to his father following a child custody battle in 2011, following recommendations by the boy's court-appointed law guardian, sources said. ACS workers supervised the child's interactions with the father for a year, making two face-to-face visits with the pair each month, one in their home, and the other outside the home, between 2011 and late 2012 before closing the case when they found that Wade did nothing wrong, sources said.
The ACS released a statement on Friday evening saying they were "launching a thorough review of the case to learn what happened and might have been done differently to serve the child welfare needs of the little boy," which they expected to conclude by the end of next week.
Officials added that "unfortunately, once ACS' involvement with a family has concluded, the agency no longer has oversight authority."