City of Newburgh Police Commissioner Jose Gomerez and Orange County District Attorney, David Hoovler stood shoulder to shoulder at Police Headquarters and announced what the public has been waiting for since last winter … murder charges in the death of 7-year-old Peter Cuacuas.  The child had been locked in a room until he was starving and malnourished.  His caretaker (who authorities believe is his mother and girlfriend of Peter’s father, Arturo Cuacuas, 56) brought Peter to Montefiore St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital  on February 10, 2020  where he was pronounced dead. Community members held vigils and lit a memorial of candles for him for months.

Bravo was charged on Friday with Second Degree Murder.  Arturo Cuacuas was charged with Criminal Neglect Homicide.Bravo is currently in the Orange County Jail. DA Hoovler said that with current court backups it could take a year to come to trial, but there is a Court Date for a hearing on October 26.  Bravo will be kept in jail unless she comes up with $250,000 cash bail, $900,000 full secured bond, or $1.5 Million partially secured bond.  The sentencing for Bravo’s Second Degree Murder charge is 25 years to life in prison. Arturo Cuacus is facing a sentence of 9 months to 1 1/2 years.  Hoovler said the lesser charge was because the parental agreement put the caregiving responsibilities on Letitia Bravo, and the father saw Peter only one day a week when Bravo brought Peter to Arturo’s apartment.  Still, Hoovler shook his head and said it was obvious that something was wrong with Peter and his father should have seen that and done something, ““He weighed 37 pounds, and he was 7 years old. I don’t think there needs to be much more said than that,” Hoovler said..  Both Hoovler and Gomerez spoke fondly about the young boy and the horrific tragedy of his death. Gomerez made comments in English and then repeated them in Spanish, saying, 

City of Newburgh Police Commissioner Jose Gomerez

“We never forgot about Peter Cuacuas and their family.Sometimes these cases are complex. Sometimes they are difficult.Sometimes it takes a little time.We in the City of Newburgh Police might be a little short staffed in human resources,but we are rich in human talents.”

Hoovler thanked the new Commissioner for hosting the Press Conference, State Police, Child Protective Services, the entire Newburgh Police department for their diligent work and a lot of overtime, and the Detective assigned to the case for the extra time and effort that they put into this case, “It does not go unnoticed.”

(Original Story from last winter)

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