Family of boy allegedly murdered by mother: ‘I just want to know why'

MILWAUKEE - A Milwaukee mom is charged with murdering her 4-year-old, and the family is looking for answers.  

Amelia Distasio, 24, is behind bars, accused of setting her son on fire and leaving him to die.  The suspect's family is trying to cope with what they just learned about the child's death.

"I just want to know why.  I mean I just don't understand," said Eva Allen, the victim's aunt.

The suspect's older brother and sister are grieving the loss of their nephew while trying to fathom what their sister is accused of.

"I love my sister regardless yah know and I know she was sick.  Yah know, I want to tell her I'm angry. I'm very upset with her," Allen said.

Distasio is charged with first-degree intentional homicide. Firefighters were called to 17th and Grant Streets for smoke last week.  They found the suspect's child dead in the bathtub, hands bound together behind his back with several belts.

"I never think she could do some stuff like that," said Anthony Bardwell, the victim's uncle.

The night before the fire, the Criminal Complaint said a neighbor heard the child say, “Please mommy, stop! I won’t do it again!”  She heard Distasio yell, "shut up!" 

The time of the fire, a witness saw the suspect climb out the window and run away.  Police later found her walking down the street.

The complaint said, investigators found searches on Distasio's phone for ways to kill cannibals.

If convicted, Distasio faces life in prison.  The family is aware the suspect has some mental health issues.

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