New details emerge as homicide probe into Vaughan infant death continues

Click to play video: '1st-degree murder charge laid in York Region infant death'
1st-degree murder charge laid in York Region infant death
WATCH: York Regional Police have laid a first-degree murder charge in connection with the death of an infant in Vaughan. Caryn Lieberman reports – Jan 5, 2024

New details are emerging after the death of an infant in Thornhill, Ont., which police are investigating as a homicide.

On Monday, a memorial could be seen outside a home where an unresponsive child was discovered in the first week of the new year.

On the evening of Jan. 4, York Regional Police said they were called to a home in Vaughan around Dufferin and Centre streets for reports of an injured person.

Police said they found an “unresponsive infant,” who was taken to hospital and pronounced dead.

The six-month-old infant was named Benjamin Berelovich, Global News has confirmed.

A GoFundMe set up to raise money for the child’s funeral and to support his father had raised more than $18,000 as of Monday afternoon.

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York police said they were investigating the death as a homicide, the first in the area in 2024.

“We’re not releasing further details of the infant or the person at this time as you can understand it’s a very sensitive investigation,” Const. Lisa Moskaluk told Global News on Friday.

“And it’s also a very sad thing to happen so early in the year.”

Global News confirmed Monday Benjamin’s mother, Zoya Berelovich, was charged with first-degree murder.

Zoya is registered with the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario and has previously worked at York Region’s Mackenzie Health hospitals.

“We can confirm that Zoya Berelovich has previously provided physiotherapy services at Mackenzie Health,” a spokesperson for the hospital network said.

“Our physiotherapy services are provided through a third-party contractor.”

They offered their condolences to those affected and said they could not comment further on an ongoing police investigation.

Six-month-old Benjamin Berelovich.
Six-month-old Benjamin Berelovich. GoFundMe

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