An upstate New York teen has been charged after allegedly beating the 2-year-old he was babysitting until the toddler was brain dead on Friday.
Devon Vanderwege, 17, has been charged with first-degree assault, but authorities say they are looking at additional charges now that the toddler, Ethan Bigham, has been taken off life support, according to Buffalo News.
Ethan was taken off life support at Women & Children’s Hospital after organs from his body were donated for transplant to other children, authorities said. The child’s condition was not immediately clear.
Ethan was reportedly attacked in the family house trailer in Marilla, the police official said, but the Erie County District Attorney’s Office declined to give additional details.
“Ethan’s entire face was mutilated, he was beaten so badly,” a family friend told the paper. “His back is black and blue. We’re told he was not only punched but some type of blunt object was used.”
Law enforcement officials have said that future charges against the teenager could range from manslaughter to second-degree murder.
Vanderwege is being detained without bail at the Erie County Holding Center.
He is set to appear in court on Thursday.