I have written a few articles for this site and those of you who have read my pieces know that I often use humor and sarcasm to develop a story line or to make a point. Some people have criticized my writing style, critiqued my writing ability (or lack thereof in their humble opinion) agreed with my views or opposed them. I have been flippant, vulgar and downright nasty at times writing a piece or responding to someone else’s opinion. I will not be utilizing any of those traits for this article. I do not need to resort to vulgarity or to use sarcasm to entail the horror that was perpetuated against a child – the facts of the case speak for themselves.
Ernest Hemmingway once said, “All things truly wicked start from an innocence.” This is true of Tiffany Toribio, 23 of Albuquerque, New Mexico. She was once an innocent child, full of wonder, hopes and her own dreams. Only she and her immediate family know exactly what type of childhood she had. We could speculate as to type of child that Tiffany was or what she endured as a child or teen, but in the end it would not change her actions or the outcome. All we can know for certain is that somewhere along the line, Tiffany more than lost her way; she lost her humanity and her soul.
Tiffany was just 20-years old when Tyruss “Ty” Toribio was born. According to her sister, Emily Apodaca, “Tyruss came into this world born to a lost and confused girl, but he changed her. She loved him more than life itself.” Apodaca claimed that the entire family, including Tiffany, loved and doted on little Ty. That statement appears to be the antithesis of what actually occurred, though not in any apparent malicious way.
According to police investigators, the tragedy began on May 7, 2009 when Tiffany and Ty were kicked out of Tiffany’s mother’s home after an altercation. Tiffany had moved in with her mother after her live-in boyfriend, alleged to be abusive, was taken to jail. After leaving her mother’s, Tiffany and Ty moved in with a friend of Tiffany’s but five days later, they were asked to leave there as well.
The reason the two men gave for asking a single mother and her 3-year old child to leave was her friends did not approve of the way that Tiffany was caring for Ty. A better way of stating that would be that they did not approve of Tiffany neglecting to care for Ty. The friends stated that Tiffany would not care for Ty, she neither ensured that he ate or was clean. So, Tiffany was asked to leave. Instead of picking up the phone and calling someone, anyone, that could possibly help Tiffany, they kicked her and her 3-year old son out.
Apodaca said that Tiffany had become disconnected, estranged from her family and moved from one dysfunctional relationship to another for several years, always bringing Ty along for the ride. She did acknowledge at a press conference, that she had had limited contact with Tiffany since August of 2008 after Tiffany became involved in yet another dysfunctional relationship. She stated that she had attempted to reach out to Tiffany once or twice to see if Ty was being cared for but never followed through because she could not find a telephone number or permanent address for Tiffany. Other people who knew Tiffany said that she had never shown an appropriate relationship with Ty. They believed that she never fully bonded with boy, showing none of the emotions and reactions of a normal mother.
Tiffany left her friend’s apartment on the evening of May 12, 2009 leaving Ty behind but returned for him a few hours later. According to her confession to police, Tiffany took Ty to Alvarado Park in Albuquerque. She encouraged him to lie down on the sand and go to sleep. According to her statement, after she was assured that Ty was sleeping, she placed her hand over his nose and mouth, suffocating him.
For the average child, unconsciously can occur from lack of oxygen within 1-3 minutes with brain cell death occurring in 3-4 minutes. Actual brain death from oxygen deprivation will occur in 4-6 minutes.
Police Chief Ray Schultz said that Tiffany stated in her confession that she had second thoughts over killing her son and began CPR to revive him. When Ty began breathing again and started to regain consciousness, Tiffany changed her mind and suffocated him a second time. This time, there were no second thoughts by Tiffany and no reprieve for Ty. She suffocated him until he was dead.
She then dug a shallow grave in the sand beneath the climbing bars and buried Ty, discarding him as if he were a broken toy – an object that she was finished with, to rot in the sand. Tiffany left him there, alone, so she could return to her friends’ apartment and gather her things. She refused to tell them where Ty was and they did not question or call into suspicion her behavior. Afterwards Toribio began to wander the streets of Albuquerque.
On May 15, 2009 a mother saw a small shoe sticking out of the sand at Alvarado Park. Thinking that a child had lost the shoe, she bent to pick it up only to discover that the shoe was not alone, it was attached to a small foot. Police and the community dubbed the child “Baby Angel” as investigators initiated a nationwide search to identify the tiny boy.
On May 19, 2009 a computer composite sketch was released to the media giving an impression of what the child might look like. Police investigators had to do that because the hot sun and sand had so disfigured the child, that he was unrecognizable when his body was found. On May 20, a woman called police to say that she recognized the child from having seen him with his mother in and around Alvarado Park.
Police were able to locate Tiffany’s friends who gave them her name. Emily Apodaca also saw the news reports regarding the deceased little boy in Alvarado Park. She said that she had a bad feeling that the child might be Ty, but dismissed the feeling. It wasn’t until she saw the composite sketch that Apodaca called police and gave them a picture of Ty. Police released Tiffany’s name and picture to the press and within hours she was arrested.
At a press conference, Police Chief Ray Schultz, his voice heavy with emotion, described Tiffany’s confession and how she had killed Ty. He stated that when investigators asked Tiffany why she had killed her son, he said that she replied, “she did not want her son to grow up as she did, with nobody caring for him.”
Tiffany was arrested and charged with first-degree murder and abuse of a child resulting in death and is being held on $250,000 bond. Police Chief Ray Schultz said that Tiffany had already attempted suicide once and was currently on suicide watch. Bernalillo County District Attorney Kari Brandenburg said that Tiffany could not be eligible for the death penalty as the state had changed the laws regarding capitol punishment severely limiting its use and that it did not apply to Tiffany or her case. Instead, Brandenburg said they would be seeking a sentence of life without parole. She also stated that they were investigating whether or not other individuals could be charged with failure to report child abuse.
Is this yet another example of a young woman losing her way and believing that she was saving her child from a lifetime of pain and neglect? Or was this a simple act of evil? A selfish young woman who had come to view her son as a stone tied around her neck preventing her from having fun and enjoying her youth? Or a woman that believed there was no hope for her son?
When I first read the reports of this, I was outraged. Actually more than outraged, just ask Max. I was venomous. All throughout the day, as I have read reports and watched the press conferences, I was finally able to put my initial anger aside and evaluate the facts of the case. I tried to see both sides and in the end, I finally decided that the bitch was a perfect example of pure, malignant evil and that she had succumbed to the depths of total depravity and human selfishness. She committed a crime that is so heinous, so abominable, that we as thinking human beings have difficulty comprehending her actions. It is bad enough for a mother to suffocate her child, but to revive that child only to suffocate them again? That is pure unadulterated evil.
Take a look at her mug shot. Not a hair out of place, wearing lip-gloss with perfectly coiffed eyebrows. She does not exhibit the vacant, vacuous look of an extremely disturbed or emotional individual.
I believe that her family believes that they all adored and doted on little Ty. But the truth of the matter is that they didn’t. That is a cold reality, but a true one. The facts of this case are still evolving and no one but the family knows for certain what occurred. The one thing we do know is that Ty did not fall through the cracks of the system. He was ignored. The family and friends of Tiffany saw that she was spiraling out of control and failing to care for her child, yet did not reach out to anyone.
This could be due to their fear or hatred of authority or just that their own lives took precedence over that of a toddler. “Every child born into the world is a new thought of God, an ever fresh and radiant possibility (Kate Douglas Wiggin).” Ty’s possibility ended alone, terrified and discarded in the dirty sand of a public play lot at the hands of his mother. We will never know what this little boy could have accomplished and she can never again be called, mother.
Does Tiffany Toribio Deserve The Fires Of Hell?
- She sure does. (88%, 603 Votes)
- No she doesn't. (12%, 80 Votes)
Total Voters: 683
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