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Connecticut police investigate toddler’s death broadcasted on reality show “Live PD”

January 3, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Connecticut police investigate toddler’s death broadcasted on reality show “Live PD”

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TV viewers across the country mourned the death of 13-month-old toddler Michael Citron, which was broadcasted on the reality show “Live PD” featuring local police officers and law enforcement from six cities.

The toddler, from Bridgeport, Connecticut, was featured on the December 2nd episode of A&E’s “Live PD” series, The CT Post reported.

A city spokesperson initially attributed the death of Cintron, who was in the care of a state-approved foster family, to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). However, the death remains perplexing to people across the nation.

Two Connecticut state agencies, the Department of Children and Families — which placed Citron in his foster home — and the Office of the Child Advocate, are currently leading an investigation.

“Certainly a child dying in foster care is a significant event,” Faith Vos Winkel stated, who investigates deaths for the child advocate’s office.

Both agencies must wait for a ruling from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner before moving forward with the probe.

Meanwhile, the toddler’s biological mother, Lauren Citron, has hired two layers. Christopher Kenworthy and Anissa Klapproth, the latter a child protection specialist, to perform a separate inquiry.

“This was a tragedy only worsened by the fact that the Citron family is in the dark regarding the circumstances leading up to, and the cause of, Michael’s death,” Christopher Kenworthy said in a written statement. “The Citron family is no closer to finding out what happened then they were when the police arrived at their home at the beginning of the month to inform them of this tragedy.”

Live PD films with the Bridgeport Police Department during an evening shift in Bridgeport, Conn. on Nov. 3, 2016.

“All we want is justice for Michael,” the attorney added. “We need to determine if this tragedy could have been prevented and if so, to be sure that appropriate steps are taken in the future to ensure that no other family has to go through what the Citron family is going through right now.”

The child was reportedly placed in a Bridgeport foster home on November 13th, 2015, just weeks after he was born. The foster family had been licensed that September.

“Before licensure we conduct criminal and child protective background checks on all adults in the household and require extensive training,” Josh Howroyd, a DCF spokesman, stated. “The training is rigorous and takes over a five to ten week period. We also inspect the home for safety and compliance with foster care regulations.”

The boy was rushed to the hospital on the episode of  “Live PD” which garnered attention not only for the toddler’s death but the reaction of one of the responding police officers. Sergeant Chris Robinson teared up in his patrol car as he told watchers that the toddler did not survive.

“It was lifeless upon arrival at the hospital. It’s um…It’s a heartbreaking scene. These are the calls that just, they get to you,” Robinson said.

Av Harris, the director of communications for Bridgeport, told Hearst Media at the time that no foul play appears to be involved, and it is believed that the child died from SIDS.

Vos Winkel added: “It’s a rare event that we classify a case as a SIDS. I want to say in three years we’ve had actually one case diagnosed as SIDS.”

Since the incident, Bridgeport has since decided to refrain from participating in any further episodes of “Live PD.”

City officials did not cite any particular incident but were pressured by the University of Bridgeport and business leaders to rethink being a part of the show over fears that it strains efforts to improve the city’s image.

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