Another Child's Death Roils Florida Agency

For the fourth time in six weeks, the state Department of Children & Families is investigating the death of a Florida child who, only weeks or months earlier, had drawn the attention of agency administrators.
June 26, 2013

For the fourth time in six weeks, the state Department of Children & Families is investigating the death of a Florida child who, only weeks or months earlier, had drawn the attention of agency administrators.

The latest to die is Ezra Raphael, age 2. Police say they were “summoned” to Ezra’s home at 15664 NE 10th Ct. in North Miami Beach, at 11:08 p.m. last Thursday to check on a “sick and unresponsive child.” When paramedics arrived, police said in a statement, they found Ezra unconscious on the dining room floor. The toddler was pronounced dead shortly after he arrived at Jackson North Medical Center.

An autopsy showed that Ezra had sustained trauma to his back and body, and the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the boy’s death was a homicide, police said. At the time when Ezra was mortally injured, North Miami Beach police said, the boy had been left alone with 32-year-old Claude Alexis, his mother’s boyfriend. He has a lengthy arrest record. Alexis remains without bond at the Miami-Dade County Jail on first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse charges.

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