LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Southern California mother has been sentenced to life in prison and her boyfriend was sentenced to death in the killing of an 8-year-old boy who prosecutors say was punished because the couple believed he was gay.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge George Lomeli sentenced the couple on Thursday, calling the 2013 death of 8-year-old Gabriel Fernandez “beyond animalistic.”
Gabriel’s mother, 34-year-old Pearl Fernandez, pleaded guilty to murder in the death of her son in February. A jury found her boyfriend, 37-year-old Isauro Aguirre, guilty of murder last year and found that he intentionally tortured the boy.
Gabriel’s injuries included a fractured skull, broken ribs and burns across his body.
Prosecutors also have filed charges of child abuse and falsifying records against four county social workers in Gabriel’s death.
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