Child welfare workers repeatedly missed changes to prevent Long Island boy’s murder at the hand of his NYPD cop father

Thomas Valva died of hypothermia, according to prosecutors.
Thomas Valva died of hypothermia, according to prosecutors. (Handout)

The warning signs were everywhere, ignored along the way to little Thomas Valva’s heartbreaking death inside a freezing Long Island garage.

A chilling chronology constructed by the dead 8-year-old boy’s mother from court records and other documents lays out how child welfare caseworkers and lawyers continually missed or ignored indicators of the ongoing abuse before the autistic child’s Jan. 17 killing, allegedly at the hands of his brutal father. The paperwork compiled by Justyna Zukbo-Valva was shared with the Daily News.

Among the terrifying allegations: Her husband Michael Valva’s fiancee warned the boys 15 months before Thomas’ death to never visit their school nurse about anything.

The mother, embroiled in a bitter divorce with husband Michael Valva, lost custody of her sons after a Sept. 6, 2017, order from Nassau Judge Hope Zimmerman barred her from seeing the boys. The mother, as recounted in her real-time writings about the case, spent the next 18 months absolutely terrified for her children’s safety.

In meeting after meeting with Child Protective Services, beginning in 2017, Zubko-Valva implored caseworkers to get involved and protect her boys now living with their father in Center Moriches, L.I. The mother, recalling a Dec. 6, 2017, meeting, says caseworker Michelle Clark blamed her rather than NYPD officer Valva for the regressing autism of Thomas’ older brother Anthony.

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