Sunday, July 31, 2016

Kyrah Martin

Kyrah Martin
2006 - December 23, 2009
Kyrah was three years old when she passed away, just two days before Christmas. Her body was found outside of her apartment building, face down in the snow just after 1:00 a.m. after the rooftop alarm in her building had been set off. Investigators found one set of footprints, matching Kyrah's, in the snow on the roof, showing that she had wandered onto the roof and then fell off, falling four stories before hitting the ground.
Kyrah's mother, Nefertiti Martin, had gone to sleep in her apartment with her four children in the same bed. She was woken early in the morning by police officers who were responding to the incident and attempting to find out where Kyrah lived. Kyrah's mother told officers that all four of her children were safely in bed. She lifted the covers and showed them, but was alarmed to find that only three of her children were in bed and Kyrah was missing.

Police reviewed the building's security cameras and found a video of Kyrah climbing the stairs that led to the door to the roof. This was just after midnight. She was alone in the video, and she opened the door by herself, causing the roof alarms to go off. Then, Kyrah vanished from the view of the camera. Her death was ruled accidental.

Sources:
NY Daily News
NY Daily News
The New York Times

Ann Marie Shawley

Ann Marie Shawley
June 3, 2001 - September 2, 2003
Ann Marie was born on June 3, 2001 to John Shawley and Raeanna Craig. She had one sister and one brother. She loved to play dress up and put on her mother's high heels. Her parents were young, and her father was known to be easy to anger and quick to get physical if he was angered. Her step-mother, Nikole Frederick had a similar reputation. 
Ann Marie passed away before she was three years old, and her autopsy showed that she had been beaten to death. Her specific cause of death was massive head injuries. She had many bruises, scratches, and welts on various places on her body, There were burns on her buttocks likely caused from a heating vent. She had cigarette burns on her body and her step-mother, Nikole, admitted that she had duct taped Ann Marie's mouth shut to keep her from making noises.
After Ann Marie's death it was learned that her father, John, had been known to physically abuse Ann Marie's mother, Raeanna. Raeanna's relatives said that John believed that men were superior to women as well. It was also said that the relationship between John and Nikole was violent too. At the time of Ann Marie's death, she had been left in her step-mother's care for weekends, as well as caring for her own two children and Ann Marie's sister. 
Nikole became frustrated when, in addition to her biological children, she had to take care of Ann Marie and her sister as well. She was angry that John would rarely help care for the children, and would get angry if he was asked to. Nikole described Ann Marie as whiny and stubborn and said that she was a difficult child to care for. She said that she spanked Ann  Marie to keep her off the heating vent, and she estimated that she had spanked her around twenty times per day.

Nikole's five year old daughter witnessed what had been done to Ann Marie and told investigators, "Mom wouldn't stop hitting Annie, and Annie kept crying and crying, and Mom wouldn't stop." At some point during that night, Ann Marie woke up and vomited on the floor. She was spanked for this too, and Nikole shoved Ann Marie into the toilet, although she claimed that was an accident. Spanking turned into beating, and Nikole said that as she was trying to wash Ann Marie off in the shower, Ann Marie thrashed about and hit her head on the shower wall.

Nikole excused the cigarette burns on Ann Marie as being from Ann Marie's brother. Nikole then admitted that when she realized Ann Marie was unconscious, she began to shake her. She then said that she had probably killed Ann  Marie by shaking her, but that she didn't do it on purpose, as she was only trying to wake her up. Ann Marie's father said he had slept through the incident, and he was not charged with anything, although he did say that he didn't think Nikole killed Ann Marie. He said that he believed Ann Marie was sent to his home from her mother's home and already had the injuries, although medical examiners don't think this could be possible.

Nikole was charged with murdering Ann Marie. She was convicted of first degree felony murder and sentenced to life in prison. 

Janessa Sandoval

Janessa Elizabeth Sandoval
2007 - September 25, 2009
Janessa was born in 2007 to parents Christopher Sandoval and Nioshka Bello. At the time of Janessa's death, she was in the care of her mother, Nioshka. Nioshka was a single mother who didn't have a job or any income. She was going to be forced out of her home soon, as her mother and step-father were moving away. This left no place for her and her daughter, Janessa, to live.

Desperate, Nioshka called an ex-boyfriend of hers and begged that they begin seeing each other again. She read him a poem she wrote in hopes that this would help convince him, but he already had a new girlfriend and he eventually hung up on her. That same night, Nioshka attempted to kill herself. When this didn't work, she took off her bra and strangled Janessa to death with it. 

After Janessa's death, investigators found out that the family of one of Nioshka's former boyfriends offered to give her money. They also offered to allow her to live with them, or even come to her location to help her find a home. It is unclear why Nioshka didn't accept any of these kind offers. Christopher, Janessa's father, said that although he had talked to Nioshka on the phone, angrily, the night Janessa was murdered, he didn't ever think that Nioshka would harm their daughter.

Nioshka was admitted to a mental hospital and found mentally incompetent to stand trial. Later Nioshka was released from the hospital and was fond guilty of killing Janessa. She was sentenced to life in prison.

Sources:
NY Daily News
Huffington Post
Orlando Sentinel

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Azaria Chamberlain

Azaria Chantel Loren Chamberlain
June 11, 1980 - August 17, 1980
Azaria was born on June 11, 1980 to Michael and Alice. She was their third child, having two older siblings and one younger sibling. On August 13, 1980, the family decided to go on a vacation in central Australia. On August 16, they put up a tent beside their car at a camp site. On August 17, Azaria's mother heard Azaria crying and went to the tent to check on her. When she arrived at the tent, she found that Azaria was not there, although she did see a dingo nearby.

Many, including aboriginal trackers, searched for Azaria with no luck. On August 24, Azaria's clothing was found, stained with blood. In Febraury of 1981, a coroner stated that he believed Azaria had died after being attacked by a dingo. Even so, Azaria's mother was charged with murder, and her father was charged with assisting murder. Eventually, Azaria's mother was found guilty and was sentenced to life in prison. Michael received a three year suspended sentence.

Eventually, Azaria's mother, Alice, was released from prison after it was decided that a dingo had been the one to kill Azaria. 

Allison Newman

Allison Newman
- - September 22, 2006

Allison was in the care of her foster mother, Carol Poole, at the time of her death. The day before Allison passed away, Carol had called 911 reporting that a child was unresponsive. Paramedics arrived and took Allison to the local hospital. She was then transported by helicopter to another hospital due to the severity of her injuries.

Allison had a large skull fracture and her brain was swelling. She was put on life support, but eventually was taken off after it was learned that she would never regain consciousness. Investigators questioned Carol about what happened to Allison. She told them three different stories, none of which could have possibly resulted in Allison's death. Finally, she told a fourth story which made more sense to investigators.

Carol said that she had been getting Allison ready for bed around 9:00 p.m. Her husband was out of town, so she was the only adult home at the time Allison was injured. Carol said that Allison was excited so Carol picked her up by her legs and swung her around. Carol called this the "whirlybird" which was a nick-name for a helicopter. 

Carol said that she eventually became dizzy from spinning and stopped. She said that Allison lurched backward and fell down onto the hardwood floor. Carol said that Allison was responsive at this point, and she went on putting her to bed. Around two in the morning, Carol said that she woke up because an infant in her care was crying. She checked on him and got him back to sleep before going to check on Allison, finding her non-responsive.

Carol called her neighbor and Allison's former foster parent, Kay Smith. Kay didn't answer, and Carol left a message on the answering machine. Then she called 911. The neighbor arrived before paramedics and police did. People who arrived to help noticed that Carol looked rather calm and Allison was a blue color when they saw her. 

Carol was found guilty of second degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, and first degree child abuse. She was sentenced to twenty to thirty years for second degree murder, and ten to fifteen years for first degree child abuse. Although she was also found guilty of involuntary manslaughter, the charge for that was vacated.

Sources:
Pound Pup Legacy
Fight CPS

Tutuila Sagiao

Tutuila Sonja Sagiao
May 15, 2001 - May 18, 2001

Tutuila was born on May 15, 2001. Her father was named David and her mother was named Monika. Tutuila had two sisters named Sarai and Oriana. She became a big sister after she passed away to a little girl named Heaven. She was born with a condition called Patent ductus arteriosus, commonly just called PDA. This condition wasn't detected until after Tutuila passed away. If it had been detected at birth, Tutuila may have lived.

Tutuila got to come home from the hospital a bit after her birth. She met her other family members. Her father took her to the hospital at one point. Around seven in the hospital said that she was fine and sent her home. Around an hour later, Tutuila had passed away at her home. She had stopped breathing, and although people attempted to revive her for about two hours, she could not be saved.

Sources:
Find a Grave

Friday, July 29, 2016

Kaiden Gullidge

Kaiden Michael Gullidge
January 22, 2010 - January 20, 2011
Kaiden was born on January 22, 2010 to Michael Gullidge and Rebecca Spengler. He was a happy little boy who loved jumping in his bounce seat, playing with animals, and watching football on the television. 
On January 20, 2011, just two days before Kaiden would have turned one year old, he was pronounced deceased at a hospital. Two days after Kaiden's death, an autopsy revealed that he had passed away due to a head injury. He received the head injury while at his day care. This is also where he was found unresponsive and taken to the hospital from,
Kaiden's day care provider, Cammie Kelly, was charged and found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. She was sentenced to four years in prison. She told investigators that she had been alone with Kaiden on the day he was injured. She said that he had been sitting on the floor when he fell backward and hit his head. It is unknown if this is exactly what had happened to Kaiden or not.

Aaliyah Mercherle

Aaliyah Lynn Mercherle
February 6, 2007 - June 30, 2008
Aaliyah was born on February 6, 2007. Her mother was Miriah Gayle. She had two sisters named Asiral and Jacki. She had one brother named Kai. At the time of Aaliyah's death, her mother was dating a man. I am unable to find the name of this man, but Aaliyah's mother trusted him enough to leave her children in his care.
One day, when Aaliyah was sixteen months old, she was left in the care of her mother's boyfriend. Aaliyah's mother was gone for less than thirty minutes, but in that time, her boyfriend got drunk and fell asleep while he was supposed to be watching Aaliyah. He fell asleep while Aaliyah was next to a pool. At some point during this man's sleeping, Aaliyah fell into the pool and drowned. Medical examiners think she was left under the water anywhere from five to twenty minutes.
The man who failed to properly watch Aaliyah was charged with child abuse and neglect. The trial continuously got postponed, and it is said that investigators made a few mistakes during the initial investigation. The man who was supposed to be watching Aaliyah at the time of her death was sentenced to just five years of probation.

Sources:
Baby Aaliyah Foundation
Bandera County Courier

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Ryan Gerken

Ryan Walter Gerken Jr.
June 8, 2008 - June 2, 2009
Ryan was born on June 8, 2008 to Ryan Gerken Sr. and Jessica Barnes. He was a beautiful, happy, and healthy little boy. He smiled often and loved playing and laughing.
On May 31, 2009, Ryan was in the care of his mother, Jessica. Jessica put him in the bathtub, put the plug into the drain, and then turned on the water to fill the bathtub. As the bathtub was filling, she left the room, leaving Ryan in the bathtub all by himself. Jessica eventually became concerned when she didn't hear Ryan playing. She went back to the bathroom to check on him and found him under the water. The water was now about one foot deep. She called 911 and did CPR, as the operator instructed her to, until paramedics arrived.
Ryan was rushed to the hospital where he passed away. Medical examiners said that they believed Ryan had only been left alone for five to ten minutes. Ryan's mother, Jessica, was charged with manslaughter through aggravated child neglect. She pleaded guilty and received a sentence of two years of community control and three years of probation.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Lauren McConniel

Lauren Michele McConniel
October 3, 2004 - March 9, 2010
Lauren was born on October 3, 2004 to Amber Huggins and Ryan McConniel. She had a brother named Cameron, a sister named Kaylynn, a half sister named Hanna, a step-sister named Cora, and three stepbrothers named Kaden, J.J,, and Zach. At the time of Lauren's death, she was in the care of her father, Ryan, and her step-mother, Brittany McConniel.
Just months before Lauren's death, she had visited the hospital more than once. Visually, she had broken fingers, head injuries, weight loss, vaginal abnormalities, and malnutrition. She also displayed some worrying behaviors. Despite hospital staff seeing many of these things, only one staff member called child protective services in regards to Lauren.
A counselor at one of the health centers Lauren visited said that she had never seen such bizarre behavior from a child before. She believed that Lauren was being sexually abused. She said that when she saw Lauren, she looked tired and fragile. Based on what she had been told, she believed that Lauren's mother was the one who was sexually abusing Lauren. The issue with this was that Lauren's mother lived in a different state and had not seen Lauren for seven months. 
On March 3, 2010, Lauren was sent to the hospital yet again. She had seizures, respiratory shock, and respiratory failure. She passed away just six days later. A police officer looked into the claim that Lauren had been sexually abused by her mother, but soon saw where the story didn't connect. He also saw that when Lauren's biological mother had custody of her, she weighed a healthy amount and seemed otherwise healthy and happy. The same could not be said for when Lauren was in the custody of her father and her step-mother.
Lauren's father and step-mother also said that Lauren was being treated for malnutrition, even though she had not been seen for malnutrition even once. In February, Ryan and Brittany said that they had recently gotten custody of Lauren. When questioned about her weight, they said that they were working to help her gain weight that she had lost while in her biological mother's care. This, of course, was not true. People who came across Lauren and noticed that she was not being properly cared for believed Ryan and Brittany's stories.
In December, Lauren was treated at the hospital for broken fingers. Staff were told that she broke her fingers by jumping off of her bed. In early March, she was treated again for a head injury allegedly caused by an accidental fall. The same day, she was taken to a counselor for psychological issues. The counselor said that Lauren was malnourished, unsupervised, and failing to thrive. She also said that she was being medically neglected. Lauren was admitted to the hospital on this day, and she never left until after her death.
Lauren's biological mother had lost custody of Lauren and her sister in August of 2009 because she could not afford an attorney. At the time of Lauren's death, her mother had been trying to locate her daughters for months. She also pleaded through email to Lauren's father and step-mother to tell her where they were so she could see her daughters. Lauren's father, Ryan, and her step-mother, Brittany, were charged with felony neglect of a dependent resulting in the death of Lauren.
Lauren's mother, Amber, was worried about Lauren while she was in the care of her father. She had seen bruises on Lauren and asked her what happened, but Lauren said that she didn't know. After Lauren was sent to live with her father, he gave police an inaccurate address. Amber went to visit her daughters at the address and was told nobody had lived there for quite some time. When she plead to see her children, Ryan said that she could see them when they were old enough to decide for themselves that they wanted to see her.
After Lauren passed away, police removed her nine year old sister from Ryan and Brittany's custody. This was done because at the time of Lauren's death, she was severely malnourished, had multiple bruises, and had an elevated amount of salt in her blood.
Five people were charged in connection to Lauren's death. Her father, Ryan, was sentenced to forty years. Brittany, Lauren's step-mother, was sentenced to fifty years. Brittany's sister, Samra Lee, was sentenced to two years in prison for not telling police that Lauren was being abused. Brittany's father, Robert Lee, was sentenced to fifty years for aiding/allowing abuse. Brittany's mother, Angela Lee, was sentenced to thirty years for the same crime.

Sources:
Domestic Violence Kills Indiana
Fox 59
Washington Times

Monday, July 25, 2016

Ural Çelikcan

Ural Giray Çelikcan
May 7, 1997 - December 23, 2008
Ural was born on May 7, 1997 to Sedef and Yusuf Çelikcan. He had an older brother named Idil. Ural loved animals and was a big fan of nature. His favorite songs were "Sweet Dreams" by Marilyn Manson and "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana. He loved playing the PlayStation, reading, playing chess, playing guitar, swimming, playing basketball, and learning new languages.
In December of 2008, Ural was coming home from school. His mother watched from the balcony as Ural walked toward his home's front door. She went inside the house to greet him when he came inside, but Ural never walked into the door.
Ural had been kidnapped and murdered by his cousin. I am unable to find the name of the man who kidnapped and murdered Ural, but I do know that he was found guilty of killing Ural and was sentenced to aggravated life imprisonment with an addition of fourteen years.

Noah Fake

Noah Michael Fake
May 24, 2007 - March 1, 2011
Noah was born on May 24, 2007 to Michael Fake and Robin Greinke. He was a happy little boy who was nearly always found with a smile on his face. He loved carousels and garbage trucks. One of his favorite activities was throwing rocks into the water. His father and his grandparents absolutely adored him. He was a fan of Finding Nemo and Toy Story. His favorite color was blue. He loved eating fruit and playing with his cousins. His favorite holiday was Christmas and his favorite animal was a monkey. He liked The Foot Book by Dr. Seuss.
Noah passed away when he was three years old. He had been in the care of his mother, Robin, and her boyfriend, Steven Neil. Noah, as all three year olds do at one point or another, accidentally wet his pants. Noah's accident infuriated Robin and Steven who were said to have been under the influence of alcohol and some sort of pills. They started beating Noah. Noah was beaten by Robin and Steven for more than an hour.
After Steven and Robin finished beating Noah, they left him alone. He was severely injured and struggling to stay alive. Instead of calling for medical help, Robin and Steven watched a movie and ate pizza. They slept that night, not caring that Noah was struggling to survive. The next morning, they found that Noah was no longer breathing.
After discovering that Noah wasn't breathing, Robin and Steven decided to finally get medical help for Noah. When paramedics arrived, Robin and Steven said that Noah had a seizure. It was believed that Noah may have had meningitis. He was rushed to the hospital in an attempt to save his life, but his injuries were too severe and he had been left without medical help for too long. He passed away. He was just three years old.
Noah's autopsy revealed that blunt force trauma to Noah's head was what ultimately ended his life. Noah's death was ruled as a homicide. The autopsy also revealed a number of other injuries, some which were in different stages of healing. This showed that Noah had not just been beaten shortly before his death, but on more than one occasion.
Robin and Steven were charged with first degree murder. Robin pleaded no contest to aggravated manslaughter of a child for a plea deal. This caused her other charges to be dropped if she testified against Steven. She was sentenced to fifteen years in prison. Robin didn't help progress Steven's trial, however. She got it postponed after essentially admitting that she was the one who gave Noah the injury that ultimately ended his life.
 Steven was also offered a plea deal, which he accepted. Like Robin, he was sentenced to fifteen years.