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'I felt like I failed him' - father of slain child struggles with his death

Police said Gaylan suffered multiple serious injuries. He was taken to the hospital and found to be brain dead.

NEW ORLEANS — The family of a 2-year-old who was beaten to death is struggling both with his killing and the fact that his mother is accused of the crime.

Police say that 25-year-old Diane Ferrand was arrested and booked with second-degree murder in the death of Gaylan Ferrand.

Police said Gaylan suffered multiple serious injuries. He was taken to the hospital and found to be brain dead.

The family said that Diane Ferrand had seemed to be struggling with serious problems and Gaylan's father, Malik Washington, said that she had been making some suicidal threats.

According to the family, Diane Ferrand told them she beat the child because he wouldn't put on his socks and had peed in the bed. They say after the beating, Diane Ferrand put him in the bed next to his brother and waited 16 hours to call for help. 

Gaylan’s family say when he arrived at the hospital on April 28, he had multiple lacerations on his head, missing nails, burn marks all over his body, and multiple bruises.

“I don’t understand what made you do this to this innocent baby,” said Tatyana Washington, Gaylan’s aunt.

She has started a GoFundMe to help the family pay for the unexpected funeral expenses.

Gaylan’s father, Malik Washington, says he feels like he let his son down.

“All I could do was cry,” he said. “I basically felt like I failed him as a father because I wasn’t there to protect him.”

The family says Malik Washington had made several attempts to get Gaylan away from his mother, including the day before he died.

"I really have to help my brother bury his child," said Tatyana Washington through tears. "I’ve never experienced nothing like this in my life and it hurts, because it’s my little brother and I’m his big sister. To see him cry and hurt, it hurts me more. It hurts me more because I know how hard he tried to get his child. Why couldn’t she pick up the phone and just tell me, “come and get him.”

Gaylan is being remembered as a happy child who enjoyed Batman. His funeral is set for this coming Saturday, May 14. 

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