NORFOLK, Va. — “I may go vomit.”
Those were the words of Virginia Judge Lauri D. Hogge, who had just reviewed the images and details of the alleged abuse that killed a 4-year-old boy in November.
Larkin Carter Carr and his 3-year-old brother, Tyler, were living in Norfolk with their father and his fiancée, Catherine Louise Seals, since July, according to court documents obtained by WAVY TV 10 in Portsmouth. Also living at the home were Seals' teenage son and her 1-year-old daughter.
Seals, 35, is charged with two counts of child abuse and neglect causing serious injury, and her 14-year-old son is charged with strangulation, the news station reported. Those charges are not related to Larkin's death but to prior abuse of the boy and his brother.
Seals is being held without bond, Norfolk jail records show.
Assistant Norfolk Commonwealth's Attorney Jill Harris said prosecutors believe the teenager repeatedly punished the younger boys by pushing them, choking them, making them hang from pull-up bars and taking away their toys, WAVY reported. The abuse was ongoing since the boys, who were previously in foster care, went to live with their father in July.
Seals left her 14-year-old son in charge of Larkin on Nov. 9, Harris said. The boy called his mother Nov. 12 and said Larkin was unresponsive.
The 4-year-old was taken to Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters, where he died that same day, the news station reported. The documents obtained by WAVY said doctors found Larkin was covered in bruises and had a black eye.
Larkin’s autopsy showed his little body had sustained between 70 and 90 bruises and he suffered blunt-force trauma to the head and abdomen, the news station said. The exact cause of his death is still pending.
Harris said during that final weekend of Larkin’s life, he was very ill. He was in bed all weekend, vomiting brown and black matter, but no one sought medical help, the prosecutor said.
Larking endured "repeated beatings every other day" in the final months of his life, Harris said, according to WAVY. The prosecutor said Seals knew about the abuse, but failed to stop it.
Hogge, who denied Seals bond during a hearing Wednesday, said she was “speechless” after hearing details of the abuse and seeing photos of Larkin at the time of his death.
Tracey Quinones, Larkin and Tyler's biological mother, said she saw the bruises during a visit with her children months ago and took pictures, WAVY said. She said she sent the photos to Norfolk Child Protective Services but did not know if the agency followed up on the complaint.
"They're supposed to protect your children from situations like this," Quinones told WAVY. "I feel like they failed my son and they failed his family."
Larkin's aunt, Tosha Ann Wallace, wrote on Facebook that "(her) baby boy's" story is finally being told.
“U didn’t deserve none of this. Your wings was ready but my heart was not,” Wallace wrote. “Can’t believe your (sic) gone, love u and miss u so much.”
Photos of the boy accompanying the post appear to show bruises on his face.
Cox Media Group