BROOKLYN — A Brownsville woman beat her 3-year-old nephew to death with a belt after he became increasing uncooperative over his spelling lessons, prosecutors said.
Christen Dale, 21, was arraigned Friday afternoon on charges of manslaughter, assault, endangering the welfare of a child and criminal possession of a weapon after she repeatedly struck little Ethan Ali inside his family's home at 287 Rockaway Parkway, according to the criminal complaint.
Responders found Dale holding the unconscious and unresponsive boy. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The aunt, who was left in care of the child while the mother was out, first started giving Ethan spelling lessons on Feb. 12.
About a week later the child started having trouble with the assignments and Dale started to whip him with a belt, the aunt told Natasha Dale, the boy's mother.
On Tuesday, Ethan refused to finish a spelling assignment for the first time and the following day Dale again beat the child again with a belt, according to the complaint.
Ethan’s autopsy revealed extensive bruising on his torso, back, buttocks, thighs, arms and scalp.
He suffered internal bleeding that lead to multiple organ failure and his death was ruled a homicide by the city’s Medical Examiner.
Dale was held without bail after being arraigned in Brooklyn criminal court Friday evening.
She is due back in court on March 4.