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Murder charge added against father of 9-year-old Emrik Osuna

The new charge against Erik Osuna was filed in an amended complaint Thursday.
Credit: Ada County Jail
Erik and Monique Osuna are each charged with one felony count of injury to a child.

BOISE, Idaho — The father of a 9-year-old boy who found was unresponsive and covered in bruises in his family's apartment last month is now charged with first-degree murder in his death. 

Investigators first said that it was 9-year-old Emrik Osuna's stepmother, Monique Osuna, who caused the boy's death by beating him and withholding food. Erik Osuna knew the child was being abused and "did nothing to save his son," according to the prosecutor, but was originally charged with only felony injury to a child, infliction of great bodily injury and destruction of evidence.

RELATED: 'Bruises all over his body': Meridian boy was beaten, starved, locked in closet before death, prosecutor says

Monique Osuna is charged with first-degree murder as well. Prosecutors say she kicked and hit the boy, made him do grueling physical exercises, locked him in a closet and gave him only rice and water for weeks leading up to his death. 

Some of the abuse was believed to have been captured on nanny cams inside the house, which Erik Osuna allegedly had removed and hidden before police arrived. The cameras were later recovered. 

RELATED: Meridian 9-year-old in abuse case laid to rest in California

Prosecutors have also charged that Erik and Monique Osuna waited for hours to call for help as Emrik lay dying. By the time officers and paramedics arrived at their Meridian apartment, the boy was not breathing and had no pulse. 

Emrik was taken to the pediatric ICU at St. Luke's where he was later pronounced dead. 

RELATED: 'He just needed love:' Relatives grieve for Meridian 9-year-old at center of deadly abuse case

Both Erik and Monique Osuna could face up to life in prison or the death penalty if convicted of first-degree murder. Both are set to appear in court for a preliminary hearing Dec. 9.

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