By the time the boy arrived at Jackson North Medical Center, he'd already been dead for three hours. His face, lips, and fingers were all burned. And it was clear to investigators that he had "suffered."
The child's mother, 21-year-old Fafane Caze, initially told police the injuries marring the boy, Ghanson Debrosse, had occurred during a visit to Haiti, which ended weeks ago. But quickly, as doctors realized the boy's injuries were too "fresh," that tale was subsumed by a much more grisly and horrific reality.
At 3:30 p.m. yesterday, Caze, a mother of two other toddlers, admitted she'd tortured her son to death.
"I've been with the North Miami Police Department for 40 years," police spokesman Neal Cuevas told the Miami Herald. "I've seen so much in every aspect of law enforcement. Listening to what I heard this morning from investigators literally brought tears to my eyes."
More jarring yet is the juxtaposition of Caze's admitted crime and what she conveys on social media. There, Caze only purports to be a loving mother of three beautiful children. "That's my boy," she wrote to her son in one picture. "My two preciouses," she cooed to her children in another. "Me so happy."
Many of her status updates, however, betray an almost childlike naivete, as if she herself were the 3-year-old. "It's me Fafane," she wrote beside an image of her wearing blue scrubs, "in my school uniform." She lists the location of another image as "In My Bedroom Chillin On Me Own!!!!" Another place she describes only as, "Me happy."
But if a DCF report obtained by the Herald is to be believed, the reality inside Caze's family was substantially darker than these pictures suggest.
Caze was "ungovernable" as a child and had been in and out of trouble "since the age of 14," the report quotes her father as saying. And once, during an altercation with the boy's father, Donald Debrosse, Caze attacked the man while holding her son. She even "tried to throw the infant at the father," the Herald says the report claims.
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According to court records, Caze has been charged with aggravated child abuse and torture. No murder charges have been filed against Caze yet, pending autopsy results.