Mourners for the 8-year-old Long Island boy who froze to death attended visitation services on Wednesday, the same day a grand jury indicted his father with second-degree murder charges.
Thomas Valva died earlier this month of hypothermia after Michael Valva, 40, and Angela Pollina, 42, allegedly confined him to an unheated garage as temperatures outside plunged.
The next day, police say Michael Valva called 911 and said Thomas had fallen in the driveway waiting for a school bus, but the boy had a body temperature of 76 degrees when he arrived at a local hospital. His death was ruled a homicide.
Valva and Pollina, charged on Jan. 24 in Suffolk County District Court, could face 25 years to life in prison if convicted.
The couple were both indicted by a grand jury on Wednesday afternoon, said Austin Manghan, who represented Valva for his criminal court arraignment only. Request for comment from Pollina's attorney Matthew Tuohy was not immediately received.
They are expected in supreme court sometime next week for their arraignments where pleas will be entered.
Valva, a New York Police Department officer since 2005, has been suspended without pay, a department spokeswoman confirmed. She declined to comment when asked about his disciplinary record.
The viewing for Thomas was held throughout the evening, according to the website of the funeral home holding Wednesday's ceremony.
Thomas' biological mother, Justyna Zubko-Valva, said she alerted Nassau County Family Court judges on several occasions to remove her three children from her estranged husband's custody.
Protesters held a rally outside of family court Wednesday morning calling for the three judges that oversaw Zubo-Valva's case to get removed, according to ABC's local affiliate WABC. A spokesperson for the court system told the station "that no one understands the complexities that lead to the decisions made by the judges."
As their bitter custody battle was ongoing in 2018, Zubko-Valva posted on Twitter messages, plus audio and video, of what she said were encounters with Thomas' father.
"The Child Protective Services and the Court are protecting the abusers of my children and swipe everything under the rug," Zubko-Valva wrote on Nov. 22, 2018. "I am heartbroken because my children are being purposely hidden from me, and unlawfully I am not being allowed to even see my children on Thanksgiving."
Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini told reporters that Thomas and his 10-year-old brother, both on the autism spectrum, were "at times forced to sleep in the garage."
New York State Child Protective Services told ABC News in a statement, "We at OCFS are heartbroken to learn of this child’s death and have launched an investigation to review the Suffolk County Department of Social Services compliance with state law and regulations pertaining to child protective services."
"While we cannot comment on child protective services cases, we are undertaking a thorough review of Suffolk County’s casework and, if necessary, will provide recommendations to Suffolk County on how to improve practice to prevent such a tragedy from happening again," the statement continued.
Zubko-Valva received temporary custody of her two surviving sons last week. That order was extended by a family court judge on Monday.
It's unclear why Zubko-Valva had lost full custody of her sons.