Los Angeles ordered to pay $32 million to family of 10-year-old who was fatally abused

Los Angeles County agreed Tuesday to pay $32 million to the family of a 10-year-old boy who died after allegedly being tortured and abused by his mother and her boyfriend.

The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a deal in a lawsuit over the death of Anthony Avalos of Lancaster. Sheriff’s deputies who went to the boy's high-desert home in response to a 911 call from the mother on June 20, 2018, were told that the boy was injured in a fall. He died in a hospital the next day.

Anthony’s mother, Heather Barron, and her boyfriend, Kareem Leive, have pleaded not guilty to murder and torture.

Prosecutors have said the couple beat the boy, repeatedly dropped him on his head, smashed him into the floor or furniture, denied him food at times or force-fed him and refused to let him use the bathroom.

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A lawsuit filed on behalf of Anthony's father and three siblings alleged that the county Department of Children and Family Services and a contracted company that supplied home counseling disregarded reports of abuse.

The suit argued that the department was notified 13 times of abuse in Anthony’s home.

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Supervisors approved a tentative agreement that was reached with the county on May 4, which would have been Anthony's 14th birthday.

"We hope that Anthony’s family and loved ones find a small measure of peace and closure in the resolution of this tragic case," the child welfare department said in a statement Tuesday. "Anthony’s death and other child tragedies demonstrate the complexities of child welfare, and we continue to apply lessons learned to evolve and improve the way we work with children and families."

The department said it has taken "significant steps to mitigate the risk of harm to children" and is committed to continuing reform.

The home counseling contractor that was sued previously reached a $3 million deal with the boy's family.


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Los Angeles County agreed Tuesday to pay $32 million to the family of a 10-year-old boy who died after allegedly being tortured and abused by his mother and her boyfriend.

The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a deal in a lawsuit over the death of Anthony Avalos of Lancaster. Sheriff’s deputies who went to the boy's high-desert home in response to a 911 call from the mother on June 20, 2018, were told that the boy was injured in a fall. He died in a hospital the next day.

Anthony’s mother, Heather Barron, and her boyfriend, Kareem Leive, have pleaded not guilty to murder and torture.

Prosecutors have said the couple beat the boy, repeatedly dropped him on his head, smashed him into the floor or furniture, denied him food at times or force-fed him and refused to let him use the bathroom.

LOS ANGELES CITY COUNCIL ELECTS NEW PRESIDENT AFTER RACIST AUDIO LEAK FALLOUT

A lawsuit filed on behalf of Anthony's father and three siblings alleged that the county Department of Children and Family Services and a contracted company that supplied home counseling disregarded reports of abuse.

The suit argued that the department was notified 13 times of abuse in Anthony’s home.

LA CITY COUNCIL RACIST AUDIO LEAK: CEDILLO, DE LEÓN BOOTED FROM COMMITTEE SEATS AMID BLM PRESSURE TO RESIGN

Supervisors approved a tentative agreement that was reached with the county on May 4, which would have been Anthony's 14th birthday.

"We hope that Anthony’s family and loved ones find a small measure of peace and closure in the resolution of this tragic case," the child welfare department said in a statement Tuesday. "Anthony’s death and other child tragedies demonstrate the complexities of child welfare, and we continue to apply lessons learned to evolve and improve the way we work with children and families."

The department said it has taken "significant steps to mitigate the risk of harm to children" and is committed to continuing reform.

The home counseling contractor that was sued previously reached a $3 million deal with the boy's family.

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