Ariz. Dad Locked Son, 6, in Closet and Starved Him to Death; Boy Weighed 18 lbs. When He Died

Locked in a closet for 16 hours a day, DeShaun Martinez weighed 18 lbs. when he died, approximately the weight of a 1-year-old, authorities say

Flagstaff Police Department/AP/Shutterstock (3)
Flagstaff Police Department/AP/Shutterstock (3)

Content warning: This story contains disturbing details of child abuse.

An Arizona man has been found guilty of murdering the young son he kept locked in a closet by starving him to death.

On Thursday, a jury in Coconino County Superior Court in Flagstaff found Anthony Martinez, 28, guilty of first-degree murder in the 2020 death of his 6-year-old son, Deshaun Martinez, the Associated Press reports.

He was also found guilty of two counts each of child abuse, kidnapping and aggravated assault on law enforcement officers, according to online court records.

The abuse the child had suffered in his young life came to light in early March, 2020, when police responded to a 911 call at Deshaun’s family’s Flagstaff apartment about an unresponsive child, according to arrest records obtained by Fox 10 News.

Related: Ariz. Boy, 6, Allegedly Locked in Closet, Killed by Parents and Grandma, Weighed 18 lbs. at Death

Deshaun was found lying on the floor. His brother was found in a bedroom closet. Deshaun later died at the hospital, the Associated Press reports.

The boy weighed just 18 lbs. when he died in March 2020, the autopsy showed, according to the autopsy report obtained by the Arizona Daily Sun. According to the autopsy, Deshaun weighed 34 pounds when he was four years old.

The coroner determined that Deshaun died of starvation.

According to police, Deshaun and his brother were kept in a closet for about 16 hours a day, according to arrest records obtained by Fox 10 News.

The parents allegedly told police that the boys would “steal food” at night, according to the arrest records.

The boys' parents also told authorities that Deshaun's malnourishment was caused by a medical condition, the arrest records state.

They also said he had stolen diet pills, according to the arrest records.

Deshaun also had bruises and cuts when he was found, according to the Associated Press.

Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Sign up for PEOPLE's free True Crime newsletter for breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases.

Martinez, along with the boy’s mother, Elizabeth Archibeque, and his grandmother, Ann Martinez, were all charged with first-degree murder, kidnapping and child abuse, PEOPLE previously reported.

In July 2023, Archibeque, was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole after pleading guilty to first-degree murder and child abuse, ABC 15 reports.

Ann Martinez pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial.

Anthony Martinez faces life in prison when he is sentenced on June 28.

If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.