Oklahoma City teen arrested after death of baby sister

A 13-year-old Oklahoma City boy faces a murder complaint after his baby sister died from injuries consistent with child abuse, police said.
BY BRYAN DEAN AND TIFFANY GIBSON Published: August 23, 2011

A 13-year-old boy arrested on a murder complaint in connection with his baby sister's death told police he shook the infant because her cries were distracting him from playing video games, investigators said.

Linda Beletzuy, 10 months, died Friday. Her brother, Crystian Rivera, 13, was arrested earlier in the week on a child abuse complaint after police responded to a hospital where the girl was brought in with serious injuries. The girl had been left in Rivera's care before she was injured.

Rivera told police his sister started to cry when he was playing video games inside their apartment at 1609 N MacArthur Blvd. He said his character in the game was killed, and he became angry and picked her up and shook her.

He said afterward he went back to playing video games, and she continued to cry and eventually fell asleep, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Police were called to a children's hospital Wednesday shortly after 10 p.m. to investigate a suspected child abuse. Medical staff told officers the infant was being transferred from Deaconess Hospital because of a serious injury, which did not match the parent's explanation.

Medical staff told officers the girl had a severe brain injury, a skull fracture and blood clots that were compressing her brain.

Cherokee Ballard, spokeswoman for the state medical examiner's office, said Linda Beletzuy died of a head injury. The manner of her death was ruled a homicide, Ballard said.

The mother told officers the infant fell off her bed. She also said the baby fell from the passenger seat of their vehicle to the floorboard a few days before, but she wasn't present either time when her daughter fell.

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