Babysitter’s adult stepson charged with murder after 3-year-old found dead in bathtub: cops

On Monday evening, cops arrested 29-year-old neighbor Kevin James and charged him with murder, assault and acting in a manner injurious to a child for allegedly killing little Denim Brown.
On Monday evening, cops arrested 29-year-old neighbor Kevin James and charged him with murder, assault and acting in a manner injurious to a child for allegedly killing little Denim Brown.

A Brooklyn babysitter’s adult stepson has been charged with murder after cops found his 3-year-old neighbor dead in his bathtub Sunday night, authorities said.

Kevin James, 29, was slapped with charges after police responding to a 911 call found 3-year-old Denim Brown “unconscious and unresponsive” in a bathroom when they arrived at an apartment building at 770 New York Ave. in East Flatbush at around 9:45 a.m.

Denim had been left with James’ 66-year-old stepfather in a different apartment by the boy’s mother, Shamanda Brown, according to law enforcement sources.

EMS workers rushed the tot to NYC Health and Hospitals/Kings County Hospital, the NYPD said. But he didn’t make it.

Denim Brown, age 3, was found dead with head injuries inside an apartment on New York Avenue near Snyder Avenue in East Flatbush around 9:45 p.m., cops said. William C Lopez/New York Post
Denim Brown, age 3, was found dead with head injuries inside an apartment on New York Avenue near Snyder Avenue in East Flatbush around 9:45 p.m., cops said. William C Lopez/New York Post

James is facing charges of murder, assault and acting in a manner injurious to a child for allegedly killing the little boy.

Although the city medical examiner has not determined the cause of death yet, police sources told The Post that the boy had suffered severe head injuries.

By Tuesday morning, heartbroken friends and neighbors had set up an impromptu memorial in the building’s lobby that teemed with pictures, candles, blue balloons, a football and teddy bears.

Cops arrested Kevin James, a 29-year-old neigbor, and charged him with murder for the death. William C Lopez/New York Post
Cops arrested Kevin James, a 29-year-old neigbor, and charged him with murder for the death. William C Lopez/New York Post

“I used to see him walking and talking to his mom,” one woman said as she clutched her own one-week old baby girl in her arms. “So young. It’s scary and to know we all live in the same building. I feel it, you know?”

A 16-year-old boy whose family knew both the suspect’s and victim’s family said the death and charges were unfathomable.

“It’s a shock to all of us because this building we are one big family,” teenager Sam Philippe told The Post. “We didn’t only lose one person, but it’s like to me I lost two.”

Philippe also said he didn’t think James was capable of what he’s been accused of.

“I really looked up to him personally,” he said. “He is a very respectable young man, had a lot going on. He was making music going on his own brand.”

James’ family often watched the young boy while his mother went to nursing school, neighbors said. NBC New York
James’ family often watched the young boy while his mother went to nursing school, neighbors said. NBC New York

A man and woman who knew the victim’s family well told The Post that the family hails from Jamaica, and Brown often left her little boy with the neighbor or her boyfriend.

The mom lived with her stepfather, younger sister and a brother, the pair said. Her mother — Denim’s grandma — had died during childbirth about six years ago, they added.

The neighbor who often watched the boy lived with his partner and three of her sons, the pair said. And James, the second youngest son, was known for little more than sitting on the steps and smoking weed.

“I know all of them,” the man said. “Man, it’s tough. I see [Denim] with his mother all the time, coming and going, because she spent a lot of time with him.

“He was a very active kid,” the man continued. “It’s really upsetting because [Denim and James] knew each other. The kid stayed over there all the time. The kid is gone, man … such a sweet little kid.”

The woman agreed, saying Denim was a “good boy.”

“It’s a sad story … only God knows why,” she said, adding she had just seen Brown the other day.

“When she got off the elevator, my chest swelled up with happiness and sadness at the same time,” the woman told The Post. “Her mother died leaving a little baby, and now she has a baby and is going to nursing school — and her mother is not here to see it.

“Next day I came downstairs, and I hear this,” she said as she shook her head.

Another woman, who only went by San, said he saw little Denim with his babysitter at Ralph Henry Playground hours before he died.

“I saw him alive the evening and we were at the park. He was running around with my son. They were playing on my son’s scooter,” San told The Post.

“He had a basketball. I tied his lace because he was about to trip. They were playing … together and then you know to hear a couple hours later this child was killed. Every time I look at the park, I remember this child playing … running around the trees. I see him still in the park.”

“Even though this was not my child, this could’ve been my child,” she added. “I am just wondering why, why?”

The investigation into Denim’s death is ongoing, police said.