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Robert Wright: NYC father, 38, charged with murder for repeatedly punching daughter, 2, in the head

Robert Wright, 38, was charged with manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, assault, and endangering the welfare of a child
Representational Photo (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Representational Photo (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK: A Brooklyn father killed his 2-year-old daughter by repeatedly punching her in the back of her head while she slept and was later arrested after he confessed his crime to the police. Robert Wright, 38, was charged with manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, assault, and endangering the welfare of a child. His daughter, Aniyah Wyatt-Wright, aged 23 months, went into seizures and was taken to Brookdale Hospital at 11.30 am on Tuesday, October 4. Aniyah was bleeding from her mouth.

Although the baby was revived initially after suffering a cardiac arrest, she later died from blunt force trauma after being transported to Cohen Children’s Medical Center in Queens. Police and prosecutors said the city medical examiner considered the girl's death to be suspicious after determining she had a traumatic brain injury in the same place Wright said he had punched her. Originally Wright and Aniyah's mother told the police that the baby was put down to sleep but later her brother and sister rushed to them to tell them that Aniyah was shaking. 


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It was only after repeated questioning, Wright admitted to hitting his child. A neighbor in the Brownsville building on Osborn St near Hegeman Ave where Aniyah lived with her parents said that he never saw anything unusual in the family. “The family was very nice to me and my kids. They always said hi,” said the unnamed woman, according to NY Daily News. “I never saw anything wrong with them. The father never came off as violent. I never even heard a domestic dispute between them.” Since Wright's arrest, Aniyah's mother has not been back to the apartment. “I’m a mother myself, so this has been draining,” she said. “I saw when they took the baby in the ambulance and since then, I haven’t been in the building a lot since it happened. It’s heartbreaking.”

Records show Wright was held on a $1 million bond or $100,000 cash, following an arraignment in Brooklyn Criminal Court. 

MEAWW previously reported that a couple in China have been handed a death sentence after it was revealed the dad threw his two children out of the 15th-floor balcony of his apartment in 2020. According to local media, Zhang Bo killed his two-year-old daughter and one-year-old son to please his girlfriend Ye Chengchen. Bo's ex-wife and the mother of the children Chen Meilin has slammed him for his action, telling the press "I couldn't imagine what my kids had experienced." In another incident that occurred in late October, the body of Kendrick Lee was found in an apartment with his siblings, as Texas police uncovered the shocking abuse the children suffered at the hands of their mother Gloria Williams, and her boyfriend Brian Coulter. According to data from the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System, an estimated 1,840 children died due to abuse or neglect in 2019 in the US.