When police arrived at his Echo Park home on Monday, the body of an 11-year-old boy was lying in a closet, wrapped in a blanket.
The boy had been dead for at least several hours, showed signs of physical abuse and appeared to be malnourished, officials said.
Hours later, his mother, Veronica Aguilar, was arrested and charged on suspicion of child endangerment resulting in death. Now authorities are trying to figure out whether the boy could have been saved and if critical warning signs were missed.
Aguilar, 39, was charged with one count each of murder and child abuse and was being held on $2 million bail, prosecutors said.
The Los Angeles Times reported Aguilar has at least three other children, ages 14, 16 and 18. The two minors were placed into protective care following the boy’s death.
The boy’s stepfather, Jose Pinzon, told police his wife told him her son was dead. Pinzon led police officers to the boy’s body when they arrived at the home.