Watch CBS News

Family "in shock" after brain-dead toddler taken off life support

LOS ANGELES — After a legal battle that lasted months to keep a brain-dead 2-year-old boy alive, Israel Stinson was removed from life support at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles, Thursday afternoon, CBS Los Angeles reports.

“They are devastated. I think still in shock,” family attorney Alexandra Snyder said.  “It’s not even my child; I am still in shock this could happen so quickly.”

Snyder is shocked by a judge’s decision because just last week the court gave her a temporary order to stop the hospital from removing the ventilator so they could get an opinion from another neurologist.

“That is something every family has to decide for themselves, not a choice that should be imposed upon somebody,” Snyder said.

This heartbreaking ordeal began back in April in the Sacramento area. Israel was declared brain dead after a severe asthma attack that led to cardiac arrest. Since then, his parents have been fighting in court to keep Israel on life support, hoping to eventually care for him at home.

“These doctors [are] telling you there’s no hope, but then you go and see your son and he moves to your voice and it brings you back up,” Jonee Fonseca, the boy’s mother said.

In May, Israel’s parents even took him to Guatemala, where doctors there said their tests showed Israel had brain activity. Soon after that, Snyder says Children’s Hospital in LA agreed to take him as a patient. But doctors later said they were going to take Israel off life support.  This morning, the two sides went to court…and the judge ruled to have Israel’s ventilator removed.

CBS Los Angeles reached out to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for comment but a spokesperson had no comment at this time.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.