Authorities have charged a Brooklyn Center woman with killing her 10-month-old son barely two months after regaining custody of the boy.
Arneshia K. Cunigan, 30, was charged Thursday in Hennepin County District Court with second-degree manslaughter in connection with the death of the boy on April 20 in her apartment.
Cunigan is due back in court on Feb. 2 in a separate abuse case filed against her last year involving the same child, when he was 4 months old.
The Medical Examiner's Office identified the boy Friday as Kamari Gholston.
Messages were left with Cunigan and her attorney seeking a response to the allegations.
Kamari had a twin sister, but Cunigan "did not abuse [her], because she was the defendant's favorite," according to the criminal complaint filed this week.
According to the latest complaint:
Cunigan called 911 about 8 p.m. and said her son was not breathing. Emergency responders arrived and saw Cunigan performing chest compressions on Kamari, who "was visibly bluish-purple," the complaint read.
Despite lifesaving efforts by police, paramedics and hospital medical staff, the boy died shortly after 9:10 p.m.
Cunigan told first responders that she put Kamari down for a nap with a bottle of formula shortly before calling 911. She went to check on him and saw he was not breathing. She said she saw formula coming out of Kamari's nose when she picked up the boy and thought he might have choked.
The Medical Examiner's Office said its autopsy found nothing to indicate choking or other evidence that the formula played a role in the boy's death. The autopsy did reveal visible bruises around Kamari's mouth and nose, and bruises near an ear and under his lip. Bruises were also detected on the front and back of his torso.
"The findings are consistent with death as a result of smothering or suffocation by blocking the victim's airway," the complaint read.
In the felony case filed in August, Cunigan took Kamari to North Memorial Health Hospital on Oct. 30, 2020, and said the child appeared to have arm pain. An exam revealed a broken elbow, a cut under his lip and "probable fractures" to a rib, ankle, wrist and knee.
"She claimed that he must have been injured when his older siblings — ages 9, 11, and 7 — were playing with or handling him roughly," the charges read. "None of the victim's injuries would be expected to be caused by routine care by an adult or handling by another child."
Kamari and his twin sister were soon placed on a "health and welfare hold" and moved into foster placement until Feb. 18, 2021, when the two were reunited with their mother.
One of Cunigan's sons moved in with his father in another state. The man said his son told him Kamari cried a lot and their mother would cover up the infant when he cried. The son later told an investigator that he had seen Cunigan choke and shake his little brother.