Aniya Day-Garrett was a beautiful, vibrant four-year-old girl.
But her life was tragically cut short by the woman who was meant to protect her.
An Ohio mother and her boyfriend appeared in court Tuesday to face charges in the beating death of Aniya.
Sierra Day, 23, and Deonte Lewis, 26, both from Euclid, have been charged with aggravated murder after Aniya suffered a fatal stroke.
Medical professionals say it was caused by repeated blows to the head.
Their appearance sparked a furious outburst from the child’s biological father.
A judge set the couple’s bonds at $1million each.
As they were being led out of the courtroom, Mickhal Garrett jumped to his feet and screamed in anguish: ‘You killed my f***ing child! You hurt my baby.’
Heartbroken Mickhal then collapsed, sobbing, into the arms of family members who accompanied him to the bond hearing.
Police said paramedics were called to the Cultural Garden Apartments on Lakeshore Boulevard in Euclid at around 11.30am on Sunday.
There they saw a child with burn marks who was unresponsive. Fire officials said there was no fire at the complex.
Aniya was rushed to Euclid Hospital hospital, where she died of a stroke. Staff reported her death to police as a suspected homicide.
The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office later found that the toddler suffered blunt impacts to her head .
She was also was malnourished, reported Fox8. Her manner of death was officially ruled a homicide.
Garrett said he had been fighting to gain custody of his daughter.
He made repeated complaints accusing Aniya’s mother and her boyfriend of harming and abusing the child.
The girl’s paternal grandmother, Rachael Garrett, told Cleveland.com that in recent months the family noticed bruises, black eyes and rug burns on Aniya’s body.
She says she raised concerns to child services.
Cuyahoga County Children and Family Services have confirmed that they conducted three separate investigations into allegations of neglect last year.
But the agency concluded that there was not enough evidence to remove the child from her mother’s home.
Day was scheduled to meet with a social worker on Monday to discuss Mickhal Garrett’s petition for an emergency custody, reported News 5 Cleveland.
A GoFundMe account has been launched asking for donations to help with Aniya’s funeral expenses. It has raised more than $2,600 so far.