BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – Police believe a woman’s boyfriend took the life of her 5-year-old son.
Eain Brooks passed away on Tuesday after being seriously injured on Sunday. An autopsy determined Eain had been murdered, and Matthew Kuzdzal is now facing charges.
Police took the 26-year-old man into custody Wednesday night and charged him with second degree murder after determining Eain died from blunt force trauma to the head. Kuzdzal is the boyfriend of Eain’s mother, Nora, who is currently pregnant with Kuzdzal’s child and is due in a couple of weeks.
Eain’s grandmother, Robin Hart, lamented, “I never thought there would be the day where I would have to bury one of my grandchildren.”
“He laughed all the time. He was the most beautiful child there was. I don’t even know how to describe him, he was too perfect.”
Police say they received a 911 call on Sunday saying Eain had fallen down the stairs, but authorities knew something wasn’t right.
Commissioner Daniel Derenda said, “When you have a 5-year-old that’s injured and in critical condition, we would investigate but almost immediately things with the extent of the injuries [it] did not add up.”
The little boy was rushed to Women and Children’s Hospital with severe head injuries. After determining Eain was brain dead, he was taken off life support, and he passed away on Tuesday.
“It was the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. To sit and hold my grandson’s hand and have my hand over his heart. And feel his heart stop,” his grandmother said as she wept.
“There’s not a word for how much I’m going to miss him. There’s not a word for it.”
Hart says she and her family were suspicious of Kuzdzal from the very beginning, and believed he had something to do with Eain’s injuries and death.
“The family has never liked Matt,” she said. “There have been times in the past where we thought he was hurting Eain. When they told me that they got him and they arrested him, I’m overjoyed. He needs to be behind bars.”
Derenda stopped short of saying Kuzdzal admitted causing Eain’s death.
“He has made some statements, implicating what he did,” he said. “I will not go into those statements at this time.”
Erie County spokesman Peter Anderson says Child Protective Services will conduct its own investigation.
Hart says she’s grateful to police, especially the detectives who worked her grandson’s case.
“I know those two men worked nonstop. They didn’t stop until they got him,” she said. “I know that, and I’d like to thank them from the bottom of my heart.”
Kuzdzal does have a criminal record, including drug and robbery charges.