Vigil held for toddler found dead in Ft. Worth; mom's boyfriend - Dallas News |

Vigil held for toddler found dead in Ft. Worth; mom's boyfriend questioned

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Friends and family gathered to grieve the death of a 2-year-old boy on Monday night, where a candlelight vigil was held on the steps of the home where he lived.

Investigators are trying to determine whether or not a Fort Worth man, who is the boyfriend of the boy's mother, is responsible for the death of Anthony Segora.

Segora was found unresponsive Saturday night in an apartment on Whittlesey Road. A medical examiner determined he died from blunt force trauma to the abdomen, and Fort Worth police have ruled the death a homicide.

Police said the child's mother, Vanessa Valdez, was at work, and her boyfriend, Erik Delarosa, was babysitting Segora at the time. Delarosa was the one who called 911.

Delarosa has been arrested on unrelated charges and is being questioned about the boy's death, but has not been charged with anything related to the boy's death.

Neighbors said Delarosa was visibly distraught on Saturday night.

"He fell to the ground on the grass he was just screaming," said neighbor Sean Townsend.

Valdez rushed home from work and was in the middle of the street yelling in despair, according to neighbors.

Bebe Gibson, a neighbor who worked with Valdez, says she checked on the children hours before Segora died.

"I go over there; he's in the back," said Gibson. "He says, ‘Bebe, can you put my toys in the bed with me and put my trucks in the bed with me?'  He said, ‘You coming back?' I said, ‘I'll be back to see you, baby.'"

Family members of Valdez said she is taking the death of her child extremely hard.

"She's blaming herself for everything. Tell her it's not your fault -- went to work, did what you had to do for your kids," said Maria Valdez, Anthony's aunt. "You were doing everything for them, so don't blame yourself."

Two other children in the home – a 4-year-old and a 3-year-old – are now in foster care. Child Protective Services said it does have a history with the family. The family is expected to ask to have the two children returned to their mother.

"He was such a good boy," said Segora's great aunt, Maggie Valdez. "He never ever caused any trouble. He was quiet. I never saw him fight with his brother or his sister."

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