A 35-year-old New York City mother walked into a bathroom inside a midtown-Manhattan burger spot and smothered her 20-month-old son and then refused to let restaurant workers attempt to revive the boy, according to police and witnesses who spoke to the New York Daily News.
According to the newspaper, Latisha Fisher used her hand to suffocate her son Gavriel Ortiz-Fisher inside the bathroom of 5 Boro Burger and reportedly told a restaurant patron who walked in on her, "I put my hand over his mouth to put him to sleep."
Fisher then reportedly locked herself in the bathroom. Workers, who became concerned when the line grew long, used the key to open the door and found the child foaming at the mouth and unconscious, police sources told the Daily News.
Fisher reportedly refused to allow restaurant staff to perform CPR on the child. Gavriel was rushed to a local hospital, where he died, the Daily News reports. Fisher was arrested at the scene and has been charged with second-degree murder.
"She didn’t seem too distressed, kind of had her head down," Marcus Comeau, 35, who was walking by the restaurant as Fisher was being taken into custody, told the Daily News. "It was scary."
Several of Fisher's neighbors told the Daily News that the mother lived with the child's father and that she may have been going through struggles lately. A few believed her to be taking medication for her mental health.
"She needs help. It doesn’t make sense," neighbor Carolyn Lawson, 47, told the Daily News. "I think she was on medication for whatever problem she had, but I'm assuming she wasn't taking her meds."
"He was a beautiful baby. He was very happy. Oh my God," one neighbor who didn't want to give her name told the Daily News. "I just brought him a stuffed animal the other day. A little bunny with some chocolate, for Easter."
Read more at the New York Daily News.