Published On: Mon, Sep 2nd, 2019

Maison Torres to remain jailed for murdering 2-year-old Lia Merino-Rodriguez as torture details emergy

After a court hearing last week, the New Jersey man, Maison Andres Torres, will remain jailed until his murder trial after details leak of Torres suffocating and sexually assaulting his girlfriend’s toddler daughter.

Maison Andres Torres

Torres, 25, is charged with murder, aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault and two counts of child endangerment.

Mercer County prosecutors say Torres had moved into his girlfriend’s Trenton home two weeks after they met and killed 2-year-old Lia Victoria Merino-Rodriguez a month later.

Assistant prosecutor said during the hearing that Torres admitted waking up angry on the day of the toddler’s death and putting her a bathtub, then pouring buckets of hot water over her.

Lia screamed from the burns and Torres poured more buckets of hot water over her and then moved the toddler into a bedroom. The hearing detailed how Torres then punched her body and face before suffocating her with his hands when she fought back.

Authorities have said Torres initially claimed the toddler had fallen down the stairs while playing with her baby carriage.

The toddler’s mother told Telemundo 62 she did not suspect he would hurt the child.

“He told me to leave her with him, that he would take care of her that day, and so I left her,” she said in Spanish. “He always behaved well with her, we’d always go to the park, to eat, to have an ice cream in the evening. Truthfully, I never suspected him.”

The Middlesex County Medical Examiner’s Office performed an autopsy and ruled her cause of death as “homicidal violence.”

“May he rot in prison,” Lia’s mother said. “Death will not be enough for him for all that he did to my girl.”

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- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at theglobaldispatch@gmail ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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