Friday, May 27, 2016

Kaelyn Bray

Kaelyn Serene Bray
August 2, 2006 - March 1, 2010
Kaelyn Bray was a happy little girl who loved bright colors, especially pink. She was always playing, smiling, and laughing. She especially loved doing these things with her brother. She was a big fan of Tinkerbell, and she liked puzzles. She also liked being fashionable and was often seen dressed in shoes and sunglasses that she thought were pretty, along with purses that she enjoyed.
Kaelyn was three years old when she passed away. At the time, her mother, Jessica Bray, was dating a man named Jerimie Hicks. On February 26, 2011, Jerimie called 911 saying that Kaelyn had fallen down the stairs and hit her head against the wall. By the time help arrived, Kaelyn was barely breathing. She had dried blood coming from her nose, and because of this, it was clear that Jerimie had not immediately called for help when Kaelyn had been injured.
When Kaelyn arrived at the hospital, she was in critical condition. She was eventually pronounced brain dead, and she passed away three days after being brought to the hospital. Jerimie had told Kaelyn's mother, Jessica, that the family's puppy had knocked Kaelyn down the stairs. When he was questioned about the dent that was left in the wall, he said that he had thrown the puppy into the wall, even though he had told the 911 dispatcher that the dent in the wall was because Kaelyn had hit the wall when she fell.
Investigators determined that Kaelyn's injuries could not have been caused by a fall down the stairs. They questioned Jerimie about this, and he eventually admitted that Kaelyn had been fussy that day, and he had gotten frustrated with her. He said that he shoved her into the wall on purpose, and that she had not fallen down the stairs. 
Jerimie had attempted to have his mother help him cover up the evidence. He asked her to take the clothing he was wearing when he abused Kaelyn. They had Kaelyn's blood and hair on them. She accidentally took the wrong uniform. Jerimie discussed this with her over the phone, and this was later used as evidence that Jerimie had tampered with evidence.
Jerimie was found guilty of murder and was sentenced to one hundred years in prison. He was also found guilty of tampering with evidence and was sentenced to an additional five years of prison. 

William Blunk Jr.

William Vann Blunk Jr.
Unknown - May 12, 2010

William Vann Blunk Jr. was a beautiful and happy little boy. He was a member of Upper Salem Baptist Church and he attended school at the Head Start in his area. He passed away when he was five years old due to a car accident involving drunk driving.

A Family Member of William's

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Meghan Beck

Meghan Agnes Beck
October 23, 2001 - December 18, 2004
Meghan was born on October 23, 2001 to Ralph and Kimberly Beck. She had a twin brother who was born just four minutes before her. His name was Ryan. She also had an older brother named Kyle. She was a happy and playful little girl who loved having fun with her brothers.
Meghan passed away when she was three years old. It is believed that she had been climbing on a dresser while her parents and brothers were asleep. The dresser fell on top of Meghan, and she passed away due to injuries caused by the dresser on top of her body. She didn't cry or make any sound. She passed away within minutes of the fall. She was suffocated by the weight of the dresser on her.
Meghan's father was the one to find her. He yelled out to her mother, "Kim, oh god, Kim!" Meghan's mother had still been asleep, but she instantly knew that something was very wrong when she heard her husband's voice. She ran to her husband who was in Meghan's room. She saw Meghan on the floor. She was pale and blue. She wasn't moving. Her father had already taken the dresser off of her. Meghan's six year old brother asked what was wrong with Meghan, and if she was okay. He was hysterical, yelling, "Mommy, make her wake up! Make her wake up!"
Meghan's mother attempted to perform CPR on Meghan, though she knew that this would do no good. Meghan had been gone for a while. Meghan's three year old twin knelt at her feet and said, "Mommy, Meggie not wake up." Help was called. Meghan's father raced down the stairs to the door to answer a knock that he thought was the help they had called for. It was actually a neighbor who was an EMT and had heard the call on the police scanner. He had come to help. Meghan's mother remembered that when he walked in and saw Meghan, he gasped.
When the EMTs arrived, they took over CPR. They quickly loaded her into an ambulance. Meghan's mother found out which hospital they were taking Meghan to and then drove to meet them at the hospital. Meghan's family arrived at the hospital. They didn't know how long she had been under the dresser or how severe her injuries were.
Meghan's mother spoke to the woman at the front desk of the hospital. She told her that she was there to see her daughter who was brought there by an ambulance. The woman said that she shouldn't worry, and she was sure that it would be okay. Meghan's mother, at this time, knew that it was extremely unlikely that Meghan was alive. She was offended by the woman's statement. If Meghan was not alive, there was no way that "it would be okay".
While Meghan's family was waiting, a doctor came in and told them that they were life flighting Meghan to another hospital. He said that Meghan's condition didn't look good, but that they were not giving up. Meghan's family was allowed to see her before they flew her to another hospital. Meghan's mother told her that she loved her and that she would see her at the next hospital. Meghan had always wanted to fly, and her mother was thinking about how she would have loved the helicopter ride. A nurse promised Meghan's mother that Meghan was going to be well cared for her loved.
One of the EMTs drove Meghan's parents to the next hospital. They called home to see how their sons were doing since they had left them in chaos with people that the boys weren't really familiar with. They learned that the children's babysitter had come to be with the boys, and they were glad since the boys knew their babysitter well. When they arrived at the next hospital, they were taken to a room where they were told that Meghan had passed away.
Meghan's family was allowed to see her, and extended family members were called. They made hand and foot prints for Meghan's family. They even made an imprint of her hand and her foot with plaster. They cut a lock of her hair for her family to keep.
After Meghan passed away, her family learned that her death was preventable. If the dresser had been properly secured to the wall, it would not have fallen on her. Her parents had never thought that the dresser would ever tip and fall over. It was heavy and made by a well known company that made furniture for children. Their home was childproofed, and bigger pieces of furniture were secured to the wall. They simply hadn't realized that Meghan's dresser could also be tipped over and become dangerous. Now Meghan's family works to spread awareness of the dangers of furniture and televisions tipping over onto children. To read more about what Meghan's family has done to remember her and their efforts to be sure this doesn't happen to another child, go to Meghan's Hope.
Meghan's Hope

Jared Klein

Jared Edward Klein
January 7, 1999 - December 26, 2005
Jared was born on January 7, 1999. He was known as being sweet and honest. He loved helping to take care of his little sister and he loved animals. He was learning to play the guitar, and he enjoyed kid rock. He was almost always smiling. Jared was a very quick runner, and he liked going to school. His biological father was not involved in Jared's life, which confused him. He once asked his grandmother why his biological father never saw him, and she told him that it was his father that was missing out, not him. 
Jared had another man in his life that he referred to as his father. This man was named Nathan Shaw. Nathan had previously been in a romantic relationship with Jared's mother, Christina Muoio, but at the time of Jared's death, the two were not together. On December 26, 2005, there was a knock on the door of Jared's home. It was Nathan. Jared loved Nathan, and he was very excited to see him. Jared asked if Nathan wanted to go upstairs with him and watch a movie, but Jared's mother told him that he couldn't. 
When Jared was not allowed to watch a movie with Nathan upstairs, he asked his mother if they could watch one downstairs. This time, she told him that they could. Jared went upstairs to retrieve a movie. When he brought it back down, Nathan told him that he had already seen that movie and asked him to go upstairs again to get another one. Christina was growing a bit suspicious as to why Nathan had come to their home and what he intended to do.
While Jared was upstairs, Nathan informed Christina that he came to her house to kill her. He started to punch her. Jared heard his mother screaming and he rushed down the stairs. He saw what Nathan was doing and said, "Please, Dad, no!" By now, Christina had been strangled to the point of unconsciousness. Nathan grabbed Jared now, and his little sister, Angel, began crying. Jared told her, "Don't cry, baby girl. I love you." It is believed that he was trying to stop his sister from crying so that she would not be the next target. She was only two years old, and reasonably frightened by all the things that were going on in front of her.
Nathan beat Jared and stabbed him in the neck. He left Jared downstairs while he beat and raped Christina upstairs. Eventually, Nathan left. He stole Christina's car as he left. Nathan had secured Christina with duct tape. She had to spend time freeing herself from the duct tape before she made her way back downstairs, which was also difficult due to the fact that she had just been beaten.
When Christina finally reached the lower level of the home, she found Jared on the floor. There was a knife in his neck. She immediately got help for Jared. She was taken to the hospital and Jared's little sister was left in the care of a neighbor. Christina's mother was called and told to come to the house immediately. When she got there, she saw police all around. She saw Angel and she was told that Christina was in the hospital. When she asked to see Jared, she was told she was unable to. She asked where Jared was and she was told that he was "gone". Jared's grandmother assumed that Nathan had kidnapped Jared. After a bit more conversation, she learned that Jared had passed away.
Jared's grandmother wanted to be with him, even if he had already passed away. She didn't want Jared to be alone. Despite her pleading, she was not allowed to go be with Jared. She instead went to go see Christina in the hospital. In court it was learned that Jared was strangled, beaten, and stabbed. His brain was swollen and one of his earlobes was almost torn off. The knife that Jared was stabbed with in his neck had hit one of his bones with such force that it was chipped.
Nathan was convicted of first degree murder, two counts of aggravated assault, rape, unlawful restraint, and theft of a vehicle. Nathan insisted that he would have never hurt Jared because he loved him and considered him to be his son. He gave a different story of the night. He said that Jared had told him that "mommy has a new boyfriend who makes her cry". Nathan said he planned on confronting the man. He said that the man was upstairs and he had heard Christina and the man arguing. He claimed that he grabbed a knife and rushed upstairs to confront the man but ran into Jared and accidentally stabbed him.
Nathan then claimed that the man came downstairs, saw Jared's body, and then ran out of the house. He then said that Christina came downstairs and yelled that he had killed Jared and told him he was going to go to jail. He said that he did hit Christina in a panic. Medical examiners determined that Nathan's story was possible, but very, very unlikely. Nathan was sentenced to life in prison plus twenty-four to forty-nine years.

Peter Connelly

Peter Connelly
March 1, 2006 - August 3, 2007
Peter Connelly was born on March 1, 2006. His mother was named Tracey Connelly. The man that Peter knew as his father, his mother's boyfriend, was named Steven Barker. Peter lived with Tracey and Steven, but he did not live a happy life. On December 11, 2006, he was brought to the hospital with a large bruise on his head and bruises on his shoulder and his chest.
Peter's mother didn't do much to prevent Peter from being abused by Steven. Steven beat Peter, and pinched his fingernails with pliers until they fell off. When Steven would walk toward Peter, Peter would cower away. Peter was made to wear many layers of heavy clothing when it was warm outside. Peter was visited over sixty times by child protective services, but he still was not saved. He began hitting his head against the wall and the floor. Even someone who has no knowledge of child psychology could easily tell that this is not normal, healthy behavior in a young child.
By the time the police searched the home, Peter was already deceased. When they did finally search the home, they found Peter's blood on his bed and the walls of his bedroom. They also found human and dog feces on the floor, as well as the bodies of mice, baby chicks, and a dismembered rabbit. Steven was often seen wearing combat gear. He collected Nazi memorabilia, and those who knew him told stories of him torturing small animals. Tracey had been accused of abusing Peter on more than one occasion, but nothing ever came from it because investigators said that there was not enough evidence, even though Peter often had multiple bruises on his body.
One woman who saw Peter reported that he always appeared dirty, and he often had a foul odor. She said that she could tell he was neglected. She also commented that, "He had the most sad eyes. You could tell something was wrong." Doctors who saw Peter said that his injuries were very suggestive of non-accidental injuries. They called social services. Peter was placed on a child protection register, and was eventually returned to his mother against the advice of the police. In March, a case worker noticed a red bump on Peter's face. Tracey said that he had bumped his head on a table. The doctor didn't believe her story. A report was made about this, but neither social workers nor police ever saw it until after Peter was dead.
In April, Peter was once again at the hospital, this time due to bruises and swelling on his face. He was, once again, returned to Tracey. Tracey was forced to take Peter to the hospital in June for a protection order check up. Doctors reported multiple injuries such as scratches and bruising. They also found what they described as a "grip mark" on his leg. Tracey was arrested on suspicion of abuse, but Peter was given back to her soon after. Tracey then failed to take him to the remainder of his scheduled check-ups.
In July, a man named Jason Owen moved into the home with Tracey, Steven, and Peter. Jason had three children of his own and was dating a fifteen year old girl. Jason claimed that Tracey and Steven would put diaper cream or chocolate on Peter's face to hide his injuries from the social worker. On July 29, Peter's biological father visited with him. At the time, Peter had bandages on his hands to cover up his missing fingernails. When he brought Peter back to his mother, Peter screamed for his father. 
The day before Peter passed away, police told Tracey that no action would be taken against her for accusations that she had abused Peter. At some point during this day, Peter was hit so hard in his face that one of his teeth was knocked out, and down his throat. After Peter passed away, his tooth was found in his stomach. This beating caused Peter to stop breathing. He was found deceased in his bed the next morning.
Tracey and Steven were arrested. The jury was unable to decide if Tracey or Steven had been the one to kill Peter. Steven Barker was sentenced to twelve years for Peter's death, though he had also been found guilty of raping a two year old girl, and he was sentenced to life for this crime. Tracey and Jason were given an indefinite sentence. The judge said they would stay in prison until they were no longer a threat to others. 

Kylee Eldridge

Kylee Michele Eldridge
September 5, 2006 - May 27, 2013
Kylee was born on September 5, 2006 to Chevy and Kristina Eldridge. She was a beautiful little girl who was very curious, as well as fearless. She was described as a tomboy. She loved catching bugs and playing in the mud. She liked climbing trees, and then jumping out of them. She also had fun teasing her brothers and her pets.
Kylee was six years old when she passed away due to a car accident. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Elaina Steinfurth

Elaina Jade Steinfurth
December 20, 2011 - June 2, 2013
Elaina Jade Steinfurth was born on December 20, 2011 to Terry and Angela Steinfurth. On June 2, 2013, a Sunday, Elaina and her older sister were with their mother, Angela, and her boyfriend, Steven King. They were at Steven's mother, Julie King's, home. Angela had told Terry that she and their daughters would be staying at her father's house. When Terry went to pick up his children, he discovered that they were not at Angela's father's house. He went to go pick them up from Julie King's house, even though Angela had promised him that his daughters wouldn't be at that home. 
Julie stated that Angela had called her the previous night and asked if she and her children could spend the night at her home. She had said that they had no other place to go, and Julie agreed. Julie said that she allowed them to stay the night, but didn't see Elaina at all on Sunday. When Terry came to pick up his children, Angela let him take their older daughter, but refused to let him see Elaina. He insisted that he see his youngest daughter, but Angela still refused. Then, his father, Terry Steinfurth Sr. came to help his son see his daughter. When Terry Sr. showed up, Angela told him that Elaina was taking a nap and she didn't want to wake her up.
Angela went into the house and could be heard crying and screaming that she didn't want to give Terry Elaina because she didn't think she'd ever see her again if she did. Finally, she came out of the house and reported that Elaina was not inside of the house. Terry Sr. and Terry wanted to call the police to report Elaina missing, but Angela and Steven instead searched for Elaina around the garage and the pool. Eventually, Elaina was reported as a missing child. Angela claimed that she believed Elaina had been kidnapped. Terry believed that someone was hiding Elaina. Terry's father immediately suspected that Angela and Steven knew exactly where Elaina was and were not telling the truth.
Many people began searching for Elaina, but they had no luck. Twelve days after Elaina was reported missing, it was revealed that investigators were heavily focusing their attention on Angela. They also revealed that they believed that Elaina had been injured at some point. Angela was arrested for felony child endangerment. Elaina's father and his family continued pleading for anyone who had any information about Elaina to come forward. 
About three weeks after Elaina was reported missing, Angela was indicted for obstruction of justice. About seven weeks after Elaina went missing, Steven was also arrested for obstruction of justice. About three months after Elaina was reported missing, police removed a container from the home of Steven King. The container contained human remains of a small child. The cadaver dogs had searched the property earlier in the investigation, but were unable to go inside the home due to the condition of the home. About a week after the remains were found, they were proved to be Elaina's remains.
Angela was not permitted out of jail to attend Elaina's funeral. Elaina's other family members and members of the community attended her funeral. There were so many people there to support Elaina that visitors had to stand in the lobby. The coroner ruled Elaina's death as a homicide. She suffered fractures to the joint areas of her arms and her legs. The injuries were consistent with trauma that was not an accident. Because of the condition of Elaina's body, it was difficult to say what other injuries she may have had at the time of her death.
A grand jury indicted Angela for murder. Steven was also indicted for aggravated murder, abuse of a body, and tampering with evidence. Angela was sentenced to life in prison for murder with the possibility of parole after eighteen years. She had entered and Alford plea, meaning that she agreed to be found guilty, but did not admit that she committed the crime. 
Steven also plead guilty to all of his charges. He was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after twenty-five years. He said that he had held his hand over Elaina's mouth and nose while she was bleeding, which is how she passed away. The judge called him a coward and reminded him that the rest of his life would be spent in prison.