Former NYPD cop Michael Valva, who has been charged with the murder of his 8-year-old son, had told 911 operator that Thomas had "stopped breathing." The revelations were made while playing the recording of 911 call made by Valva on the fateful day.
Valva and his fiancÃ©e Angela Pollina are accused of causing his son's death. Thomas died on 17 January last year from extreme hypothermia after being locked in the couple's unheated garage overnight as the temperatures dipped outside. The duo are charged with second-degree murder.
Thomas Stomach Filled with Air as Valva Performed CPR
Emotions ran high as recording of the 911 call made by Valva was played in the Suffolk County Supreme Court during a pre-trial hearing on Tuesday.
According to New York Post, in the call made to 911, Valva is heard telling the operator that his son has "stopped breathing."
"He fell down and banged his head," Valva said during the call. "I don't know if he's breathing or not ... His heart stopped. He banged his head pretty good."
The disgraced Valva also asked the operator if was normal for his son's stomach to be filling up with air during CPR. "His belly is filling up, like it's filling up with air," Valva said.
The dispatcher had asked Valva, "Are you sure he's not breathing?" to which he replied, "I don't know, to be honest," with what sounded like a chuckle.
Valva, who was seen wiping off his tears as the call recording was played, was dubbed as being caught in an emotional moment by his lawyer. Speaking to the reporters, John LoTurco said that it was the "first time" his client heard the 911 call. "So, that was an emotional moment for him and I imagine for Angela as well," LoTurco said.
Valva Said Thomas Had Peed on Himself
Newsday reported that during the trial, Seventh Precinct Suffolk Police Officer Cassidy Lessard, the first officer to respond, said that she did not see Valva giving Thomas aid when she arrived at his house.
While testifying during the trial, Lessard said that after entering the basement of Valva's house at about 9:45 a.m., she saw him kneeling at the head of Thomas, who was wearing only a pair of gray sweatpants, pulled up to his knees, and socks. "Michael Valva was not performing CPR on his son, but was on his cellphone," Lessard said according to the outlet.
"He told me that the child fell while getting ready for school; he peed on himself so he put him in the shower because he was a mess," Lessard said adding that when she knelt down beside Thomas to take his pulse, "he was cold to the touch."
The officer further stated that as she and her partner performed CPR on the victim, Valva was repeatedly heard saying "ran into the basement wall, peed himself, so he put in him in the bath."