Police say a 3-year-old boy was found dead in his Brooklyn home Wednesday afternoon with bruises on his body.
Officers responding to a 911 call at the Rockaway Parkway home in Brownsville found the child unconscious and unresponsive, and according to sources, the boy had bruises and welts indicating he'd been beaten with a belt.
EMS pronounced him dead at the scene.
Police sources said a man called police after walking into the home and finding the boy unconscious. The child, identified by relatives as Ethan Ali, had been in the care of his 21-year-old aunt, sources said.
The aunt was in the home when police responded and taken into custody there. She's being interviewed at the 67th Precinct station, along with the man who found the boy, the sources said.
The relationship between the man and the boy wasn't clear.
While police processed the crime scene at the apartment, the boy's father showed up and learned what happened, according to sources. He immediately went to the 67th Precinct station.
Relatives of the boy's father said he had been fighting for custody of Ethan.
"He was getting his baby -- he wanted him so bad," said Jennifer Evans, the boy's great-aunt. "Now his child is gone."
Family members said the boy was "vibrant" and that was "very active and loved to play."
The child's mother is cooperating with authorities, sources said.
The city Administration for Children's Services said it is working with the NYPD in the investigation into the child's death.
The medical examiner will determine a cause of death, at which point charges may be filed.