Ellyah Elvidge, 2, suffocated while trying to crawl through a makeshift gate to escape a filthy room which was littered with trash and feces. The toddler’s mother and her boyfriend have been charged with criminally negligent homicide in connection to the little boy’s death.
Patricia Giddings, 21, and Brandon Bushey, 24, were arrested and charged with Ellyah Elvidge’s homicide in late December. The family lived in AuSable Fork – a town in upstate New York. Police investigators worked on the case for nearly four months before child abuse related homicide charges could be brought against the toddler’s mother and her live-in boyfriend.
Andrew Cuomo: Justice for Ellyah James Elvidge – Sign the Petition! https://t.co/9ga50EjvqU
— Sasha Eagle (@DanceSashaDance) December 18, 2016
The little boy died inside his home located at 2426 State Route 9N in AuSable Forks. Ellyah Elvidge suffocated to death on August 9, 2016 as his mother Patricia Giddings and her boyfriend Brandon Bushey sat on the couch watching television in a nearby room. The toddler’s head became lodged inside a hole cut into a 4-foot-long piece of plywood being used to gate the child inside his room, the Daily Mail reported. According to police reports, Ellyah was just tall enough to look through the hole which trapped his head and caused him to suffocate.
The arrest report revealed the room where Ellyah was kept was filled with dirty diapers, animal feces, and broken toys, WCAX noted. New York prosecutors deemed the toddler’s room a “holding pen” and described the living conditions the child was subjected to as nothing short of deplorable.
When Patricia Giddings and Brandon Bushey finally discovered Ellyah prone and unconscious in the filthy room, they took him to a local hospital. He was pronounced dead of asphyxiation shortly after arriving at the emergency room.
State Police Troop B Bureau of Criminal Investigation Captain Robert LaFountain said both Patricia Giddings and Brandon Bushey were responsible for the supervision of Ellyah the night he died, according to the Press-Republican.
During an initial court appearance Giddings admitted she would keep Ellyah penned inside his dirty room without adult supervision for up to five hours at a time. She did not reportedly exhibit any emotion during the hearing. Ellyah’s mother is also reportedly believed to have a younger child.
Upon learning about the living conditions of his son, Joshua Elvidge relayed both his dismay and shock.
“It’s very sickening, and I just wish she could look me in the eyes because what they described, in my eyes, is that he was living like a pig. Like an animal,” Joshua Elvidge said. “I just want her to look me in the eyes and say it was all right and that it was OK for my son to be living like that and that she was confident he was safe.”
Photos of Ellyah Elvidge and his family shared on social media depict a facade of happiness and normalcy in the home. The 2-year-old boy is shown smiling next to his mother in most of the photos. To the outside world, Ellyah likely appeared to be a happy, healthy, clean, and well cared for toddler.
Not long after Ellyah Elvidge died, his mother and her boyfriend broke up. Brandon Bushey then moved to New Jersey – where he was ultimately arrested and extradited back to New York. Giddings was arrested just a few days before her ex-boyfriend. They are both being held on a $100,000 bail in the Clinton County Jail.
Brandon Bushey is scheduled to appear in court to face negligent homicide charges on January 21. Patricia Giddings is slated to appear on the same charges on February 8. If convicted of the horrific crime which caused the death of Ellyah Elvidge, they could each face up to four years in prison.
[Featured Image by Miamia/Shutterstock]