California mother, boyfriend arrested for toddler's death; family says there were signs of abuse

FRESNO, Calif. -- A California family is torn over the loss of 4-year-old Kyis Conrady. They say they're realizing now there were signs of abuse they missed.

Deputies arrested a Dos Palos mother and her boyfriend over the death of the woman's young son. Murder and child endangerment charges came two weeks after Kyis was rushed to the hospital.

When you lose someone so close, words can be hard to find. For Chad Meza, his 4-year-old great nephew was his life.

"I just got to keep him in my heart, you know?" Meza said.

He chauffeured the little boy between his mother and father's home every week. He was about to pick him up to spend a weekend together when he got a call from the hospital.

Kyis's mother, Chanish Conrady, told the family her son had suffered a seizure, but an autopsy painted a more violent picture.

"I think I ignored a lot of the signs because I'm not a professional on that," Meza said.

Deputies arrested Conrady for child endangerment. They say her boyfriend Steven Perez Jr. committed murder.

"All I got to say is he's going to meet his maker," said Meza. "You don't take someone's life and then not meet your maker."

Family members say Kyis was a happy child who loved to smile, but there were hints he dropped that showed not all was well at his mother's house.

"He would cry, 'Please don't take me.' It's like taking a toy from a kid, he'd throw a fit. That's what it came down to," Meza said.

Deputies say Child Protective Services had been called on the suspects before.

"I want everyone to know: hug your young ones, love them. Let them know you love them, they didn't ask to come here," Meza said, adding that everyone should pay attention to any signs of abuse.
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