Breaking News
More () »

4-year-old boy stabbed by uncle, drugs 'the reason for the attack,' Gwinnett police say

Anatolii Balesta, 19, is now being charged with aggravated assault and first degree cruelty to children, according to authorities.

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A suspect is in custody after police say he stabbed his 4-year-old nephew Sunday morning, Gwinnett Police Department said.

Officers said they responded to an injured child call around 8 a.m. on Lewis Ridge Circle in Lawrenceville and when they got there, located the boy with a stab wound to his abdomen. The suspect was still inside the house and was arrested on-scene.

Anatolii Balesta, 19, is now being charged with aggravated assault, first degree cruelty to children and possession of a knife in the commission of a felony, according to authorities. Balesta had been recently living at the home, according to Gwinnett County Master Police Officer Angela Carter.

Detectives said they believe that drug use was the reason Balesta attacked the boy, although they are still investigating. The child was taken to the hospital where they say he is in stable condition. He is not believed to have life threatening injuries and is expected to make a full recovery, police said.

The boy's mom was inside the house at the time of the incident but was believed to have been asleep, according to Carter. Another family member who is related to the boy's parents was inside the house at the time of the stabbing and was able to call 911, authorities said.

Carter noted that the Division of Family and Children Services is involved in the case. It is not yet known whether any other children were at home at the time of the incident.

If anyone has any information regarding the case, they are asked to contact Gwinnett Police Department detectives at 770-513-5300 or Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477.

News happens fast. Download our 11Alive News app for all the latest breaking updates, and sign up for our Speed Feed newsletter to get a rundown of the latest headlines across north Georgia.

Before You Leave, Check This Out